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THE provincial executive has given Premier Helen Zille the green light to appoint a commission of inquiry into policing in Khayelitsha following a spate of vigilante attacks.
Zille is obtaining legal advice and awaiting comment from police before she goes ahead.
“The police had to respond to complaints the (Social Justice Coalition) and some individuals made against them,” said Zille’s spokesman, Zak Mbhele. They were to have responded by June 20, but asked for more time.
Zille agreed to give the police until today to respond, Mbhele said.
Last night, about 200 people held a candlelight vigil at the Solomon Mahlangu Hall in Khayelitsha for people killed in the vigilante attacks.
Mbhele said that the police’s response would be studied by provincial administration lawyers.
The Social Justice Coalition has urged Zille to establish the commission.
It said 11 people had been murdered in Khayelitsha since the beginning of the year and that residents feared this number could be higher, as the media did not always report murders in the township.
“Some have been killed through necklacing,” the Social Justice Coalition said yesterday.
“In an area (with) high levels of crime and a policing and justice system that is failing the community, exasperated residents are taking the law into their own hands.”
The organisation said it condemned vigilante attacks, but it understood people’s frustrations with policing.
“We understand that this often seems like a waste of time, given many people’s experiences in dealing with the police and the courts, where cases drag on for years, dockets are lost and convictions rates are low.
“However, the continuation of vigilante killings only fuels violence and exposes people, including young children, to terrible scenes of brutality.”