CApe Town - Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille led a march against crime and drugs through Mitchells Plain in Cape Town on Sunday afternoon.
“The purpose of the march is to once again draw the attention of the national government to the major failings of bringing drugs and crime under control,” she said outside Mitchells Plain police station after handing over a memorandum.
“We are asking for more police on the street. We are asking for the reinstating of the gang and drug unit that was scrapped... and we are looking for the army to be brought in.”
Around 100 people, mostly women and children, marched from Atletiek Street in Beacon Valley to the police station.
They were escorted by a Nyala, metro police and a DA-emblazoned bakkie blaring out loud music.
Zille said she believed the police in the area were doing their best but that they had few resources.
“They haven't even got the information and communication technology of the standard they need to fight crime and they're really overworked.” She said it had recently been revealed in the media that the Western Cape had the highest vacancy rate for police personnel.
“We in the provincial government can do nothing about it because that is the responsibility of police, of national government.”
A 63-year-old woman who took part in the march said at least seven children had been killed in her street, Netball Crescent, as a result of gangsterism this year.
Children could not play in the field across the road because the Mongrels and 28s gangs had made it unsafe.
She did not want to give her name for fear of reprisal.
“At the moment, we have two drug smugglers in our road. The police come and the police go. I say it's corruption.
“They smile at the police. The police smile at the gangsters.”