[imagesource: GroundUp/Ashraf Hendricks]
When SANDF forces arrived in some of Cape Town’s most gang-plagued areas back in July, residents cheered in hope.
I’m sure you’re familiar with stories of the day-to-day struggles of living in areas like Mitchells Plain and Delft, and if you’re not, here’s some pretty chilling reading.
In total, more than 1 300 SANDF members have been on duty around Cape Town since July 18, although the plan is to withdraw them on September 16, which is 19 days from now.
Despite their presence, violent crime persists. Reporting below via News24:
A bloody start to Tuesday saw seven people killed in three separate early morning shootings in Cape Town, Western Cape police have confirmed…
“In one incident in the Siqalo informal settlement in Philippi, three males between the ages of 20 and 30 were found lying in the street with bullet wounds to their heads,” [spokesperson Captain FC Van Wyk] said.
“In Leiden, Delft, a 60-year-old woman and a 27-year-old male were found shot dead in a house and one other victim injured.”
In Samora Machel, locals on their way to work discovered two dead women lying on the side of the road just after 05:00.
“They had been shot in the upper parts of their bodies,” Van Wyk confirmed.
Here’s a sobering statistic – Cape Town’s 10 most gang-plagued areas account for 42% of the Western Cape’s attempted murders.
When pressed on the army’s presence yesterday, defence and military veterans minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said that it was just a temporary solution to a much larger problem, reports BusinessLIVE:
…she stressed that restoring law and order was not an overnight and instant occurrence and that the deployment could not permanently fix the problems in the affected areas.
Mapisa-Nqakula stressed that the major causes of the crime and violence were the socioeconomic conditions, unemployment and poverty conditions in these areas and could not be removed through the deployment of soldiers and effective policing.
She added that the government considered the exercise a success thus far, although there was a different message from community policing forums (CPF) in affected areas.
Hanover Park CPF went as far as to say it was simply not working, and others have long voiced concerns about what happens when the army is eventually withdrawn.
In terms of the total cost of the deployment, President Cyril Ramaphosa has previously stated R23,4 million as the figure.
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