By Shakirah Thebus
There was a feeling of anger and frustration amongst a small group of protestors over the current uptick in crime and violence. Demonstrators gathered at the Keizergracht street in Cape Town for a peaceful march to the Provincial Legislature and National Parliament Buildings on Tuesday. The ‘We for Us South Africa Peace’ Initiative along with various civic groups including members from various religious and civic organisations participated in the march, including PAGAD, African Progressive Movement (APM), Taking Back Our Streets and SAACSO among others.
It was a collective call to the South African government to act in crime infested areas and to seriously tackle the recent child murders, farm killings, gang-related violence and rape. Voices calling out “We refuse to be victims” and “We are strong when we stand together” could be heard as protesters made their way through the streets.
MEC for Community Safety Albert Fritz met with protesters at the Provincial Legislature Building. A young Alexander Sinton High School learner from Parkwood addressed the crowd and shared her fears when leaving her home for school every morning at 5am. More personal stories were shared from protesters.
The protesters then moved to National Parliament Building to hand over a memorandum of demands. The Deputy Minister of Police accepted the memorandum on behalf of Police Minister Bheki Cele. He shared the following with those who gathered at Parliament.
“Never take the law into your own hands but you must march unapologetically and raise your issues. We will be here to give you an ear and go through your demands.”
We for US SA demanded a response to their memorandum in two weeks and a meeting will be arranged on a way to move forward.