The Western Cape Acting Provincial Commissioner, Major General Thembisile Patekile, has called for the mop up of arms and ammunitions, stating that the proliferation of such arms is responsible for the increasing spate of violent crimes.
Patekile, who was speaking just one week after assuming the position, said the police authority in Western Cape had recorded multiple murders in just one week. He said both civilians and policemen had been recorded as fatalities in the recent attacks occasioned by proliferation of arms.
He said : “ In my assessment of crime patterns within the Province, I have observed with concern the alarmingly high levels of serious violent crimes that are driven by the proliferation of illegal firearms.
“ The Western Cape, particularly the Cape Town metropole, has just emerged from a week that saw multiple murders recorded in the following areas. On Thursday, two teenagers were killed in Beacon Valley, three others sustained serious injury.
“ In Maureen Street, also in Mitchell’s Plain, four men between the ages of 30 and 64 were shot dead on Saturday, while a fifth victim escaped with a gunshot wound. Police officials were also not spared from these attacks as 45-year-old Sergeant, Welcome Mdoko and 28-year-old Constable Mninawa Breakfast, were ambushed in Bloekombos, Kraaifontein in the early hours of Sunday morning.
“ They both died on the scene. Four men in their thirties came under attack from two assailants in Thubelitsha, Delft after 2:00 on Sunday morning. Two died in the scene while two others sustained serious injuries, and others. ”
The police chief further stated that with illegal firearms off the streets, the Province’s communities will be safer.
Patekile also called for community involvement in the arms mop up, saying: “ Intensified policing initiatives with community involvement will go a long way towards ensuring all communities are and feel safe. ”
He noted that in the previous weeks, 30 illegal firearms and rounds of ammunition were seized with several arrests effected in various operations undertaken throughout the Western Cape.
In another development, the police authority said 13 men between the ages of 22 and 47 have appeared at the Cape Town Magistrates court, in connection with an incident that occurred at a luxury car dealership in Cape Town a week ago.
“ The suspects were arrested in tracing operations executed over the weekend. They are facing business robbery, malicious damage to property and extortion charges.”