“It’s all-out war.” This is how Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz is describing the province’s high murder rate, aggravated by almost daily gang gun battles.
Fritz has reiterated the Western Cape needs to be given control of the police in the province, a promise which featured prominently on the Democratic Alliance (DA)’s election manifesto. Added to this are repeated calls for the army to be sent into communities worst affected by gangsterism.
The Western Cape government’s previous calls for the army to deployed to gang-infested areas have been refused.
Fritz is this time calling for the army to control a state of emergency.
“We’re talking about calling in the South African Defence Force to come and lock down areas. Get every illegal gun out of that area.”
Since the start of the year, close to 2,000 people were killed in the province. Most of the murders were gang related.
Over the past weekend, at least 14 people were killed in separate shootings in Cape Town. Six women were shot and killed in Philippi East on Friday evening. In the very same area, five men were shot dead the following day.
In Hanover Park, a man and a woman were gunned down on Saturday morning. Police have also confirmed a Delft man died after suspects barged into his home and opened fire on him.
According to the 2017/18 crime figures, national murder rate increased by almost 7%, which translates to 57 murders a day. The latest crime statistics show that detectives in Nyanga, Cape Town, investigate 308 murders a year on average. This was 27 more than the previous financial year.
Kraaifontein, also in Cape Town, recorded the biggest jump with a staggering 31% increase in murders. The stats also show how almost all gang-related murders in South Africa were recorded in the Western Cape.
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