Following allegations by an anti-crime body that racism is hampering policing, a police union says white cops should be deployed to Manenberg police station.
On Thursday, the Daily Voice reported that Manenberg Community Policing Forum (CPF) chairman Kader Jacobs believes the predominantly coloured community has rejected black cops in the area.
Jacobs told the Daily Voice racism and the language barrier between black cops and coloured residents is a major concern, citing this as one of the reasons why the community turns on police.
Jacobs said “Manenberg is a very racist society”, when referencing the area which has been torn apart by three fatal shootings since last weekend.
Among the victims are two mothers, Shameema Adams, 35, and Sharon Saban, 50.
Now the Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) says white officers should be deployed to Manenberg police station.
Popcru provincial secretary Mncedisi Mbolekwa says SAPS should be sensitive to the communities’ needs.
“More white and coloured policemen should be deployed because they can speak Afrikaans,” he told the Daily Voice.
“The police need to be sensitive when deploying members to a particular area.
“By law, when someone goes to a police station to make a case they must be allowed to speak in their mother tongue.
“The police’s human resource department must be sensitive to the needs of the community.
“I am not saying Xhosa or other black policemen should not be deployed there, but the ratio must speak to the community’s needs.
“You can’t only have Xhosa-speaking policemen in the charge office. This community has a good case.”
Mbolekwa says he was not aware of the race issue at the station until now.
“I was shocked when I read about this in the Daily Voice,” he added.
“We will have to meet with the provincial commissioner [Lieutenant General Khombinkosi Jula] to visit the station for a fact-finding mission, so we can see what is really going on.”
Manenberg police declined to comment.
Meanwhile, the gang violence continues with another suspected gangster shot and wounded on Wednesday night.
Since the start of the year, seven people have been killed during gang violence.
Police are yet to make any arrests.