Pagad boss held by cops

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Pagad leader Abdus Salaam Ebrahim was taken in by police after a shoot-out. Photo: Jason Boud

Cape Town - Three Pagad members – including the organisation’s leader, Abdus Salaam Ebrahim have been taken in for questioning by police in connection with a shooting in the early hours of on Thursday.

The three men are aged 54, 52 and 37.

Police spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Andre Traut said a 21-year-old man had been shot and wounded in Rietbok Street in Lotus River after midnight on Thursday.

The three were taken in soon after the incident. A spent cartridge was found at the scene.

Pagad national spokesman Osman Sahib has confirmed that Ebrahim was one of three of their members held at the Grassy Park police station for most of on Thursday.

The three men were later detained separately at three police stations across the city – Nyanga, Langa and Harare, Khayelitsha.

Sahib said the police had told him that a spent cartridge was found in the car.

The Cape Flats is in the midst of a drug and gang war and a number of innocent people have been caught in the crossfire.

Cassiem Parker, also speaking on behalf of Pagad, said late on Thursday that they were trying to meet the three and would only then be in a position to release a press statement.

He said the organisation had been meeting regularly and carrying on with its anti-drug and gang activities. Pagad came to prominence in 1996 when drug turf battles escalated.

The organisation marched on the houses of drug lords and suspected drug lords.

Although acquitted in 2002 of the public lynching of Hard Livings gang boss Rashaad Staggie, who was shot numerous times and set alight during a protest march on his Salt River home in August 1996, Ebrahim, pictured, was convicted of public violence.

After serving nine years in prison and four more under house arrest, Ebrahim said in 2010 that he was ready to throw himself back into the fight against gangsterism and drugs.

An excecutive member of the Mitchells Plain community policing forum said on Thursday that Pagad had been meeting regularly at mosques in the area and had held marches in the community.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, he said Pagad was “raising the temperature”.

On Wednesday, a pipe bomb was hurled at the house of a suspected drug dealer in New Woodlands – the third pipe bomb in the past two weeks.

Traut said the circumstances of the matter was being investigated.

“Finer aspects can only be released once our investigation has reached a more advanced stage,” Traut said.

Hanif Loonat, chairman of the Western Cape Community Policing Board, said on Thursday that he was sure the police would get to the bottom of the matter.

No fingers could be pointed at anyone, he said, until there were enough facts.

lynnette.johns@inl.co.za

Cape Argus


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