The Elsie River Community Policing Forum (CPF) has slammed media reports on gang violence in the area as “distorted”, after a temporary diversion of patients to the Tygerberg Hospital and Delft Day Hospital. On Monday, the Western Cape Emergency Medical Service (EMS) temporarily suspended the transportation of patients to the Elsies River day hospital and maternity ward after two security guards were stabbed on the premises the night before.
The CPF’s Imraahn Mukaddam said the violence has sparked concerns among residents and visitors about safety, but cautioned that the incident was not gang related.
“This is a create misrepresentation by the media. It is completely distorted. There was no gang violence involved and our area is fairly calm,” says Mukaddam.
The CPF and the neighbourhood watch will be working closely in order to clamp down on crime in the area.
“These security platforms will work with the neighbourhood watch to ensure safety of patients,” says Mukaddam.
The Forum will prioritize the safety of patients by running a register list at the hospital that requires visitors to sign in. Metro EMS spokesperson Robert Daniels says one of the guards suffered a head injury.
“Patients were diverted to the Tygerberg Hospital and Delft Day Hospital when services were initially suspended, but the facility is operational once again.”
Mukaddam says the incident occurred after a patient had an argument with a member of security. The CPF appealed to the media not to vilify the community by continuously associating it with gang violence.
“There are upliftment projects in our area. There are so many good things happening but they never report on it,” says Mukaddam.
The Forum believes there is a need to restore dignity to the Elsies River community who has been tarnished by the media as one corrupted by crime.
“Our area is fairly calm and area is fairly quiet. We don’t want the perception that Elsies River is so bad that ambulance can’t come into Elsies,” says Mukaddam. VOC