Call to investigate rise in cop killings after off-duty officer killed in Mfuleni
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Cape Town - Police unions are calling for a study to be conducted on police killings and recommendations be properly implemented to curb the scourge.
This after the killing of two people in Olifant Street Ext 6, Mfuleni, on Tuesday, of which one was Phindile Vutula, 33, an off-duty police officer who was stationed at Philippi East.
Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) spokesperson Richard Mamabolo said the finalisation of the Firearms Control Act must be fast-tracked as unlawful firearms were mainly the root cause of the menace.
Vutula’s killing come almost four weeks after officer Koliswa Vani, 50, who was stationed at the Delft police station, was shot and killed in Mfuleni, while three others were injured, including her 3-year-old grandson.
Police spokesperson Andrè Traut said the circumstances surrounding a double murder were being investigated.
Traut said the victims’ bodies were discovered in a silver Ford Focus.
“The suspects are yet to be arrested,” he said.
According to a leaked police report, the right back door of the car was open and there were bullet holes in the door. Both victims’ bodies were found on the back seat with multiple gunshot wounds.
Vutula's uncle, Mandlakhe, 44, said his nephew had recently joined the force. He said after he was told of the incident, he went to the scene and couldn't find him but noted that the car was his.
“I quickly rushed to look for him at Tygerberg Hospital but I was told that he was not there, only to find him at the mortuary.
“I asked to be shown the body that had just come, just to be sure and it was him. He had six bullets on his body, two in the chest and two in the legs,” said Mandlakhe.
SA Police and Allied Workers Union (Sapawu) president Bonga Makuliwe said police killings had been worrying and were becoming a norm.
Mamabolo said many officers were killed when on and off-duty due to the kinds of cases they were handling, their firearms, the lack of respect of the community for police, poor levels of trust and cooperation between the two, alleged corruption within the police, poor service delivery, inadequate resources and lack of back up.
Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz has called on the police to use all their resources to stop the spate of killings on the Cape Flats, including the latest killings in Mfuleni.
“We appeal to community members with information that might assist the police in their investigations to please come forward. We also extend sincere condolences to the friends and families of the victims,” said Fritz.
Anyone with information that could assist in the investigation is urged to contact the Crime Stop number 08600 10111 or via the MySAPSApp.