Cape Town - A toddler was shot and wounded in Manenberg while being breastfed at the weekend.
One-year-old Almaaz Mohamed was on her mother’s lap when a stray bullet struck her in the upper thigh and travelled into her stomach.
Her grandmother, Faldelah Mohamed, said they were at a Food Fair event at a park near their home in Sherwood Park on Saturday.
“We didn’t know that she had been shot and only saw her bloody foot. Her parents rushed her to hospital, where they were told she had been shot. No one heard the gunshot go off. Our side is quiet, it’s only by the flats where they are shooting, so we think the bullet may have come from that side and then struck my granddaughter.”
The tot underwent an operation to remove the bullet.
“She opened her eyes yesterday; we were told by the doctors that she is out of danger.”
Manenberg Community Policing Forum’s Vanessa Adriaanse said it was concerned about the shooting, especially during the school holidays.
“We are disappointed that we are back with the ongoing gang war, it was quiet for about two weeks and we were made to believe that there was peace. At this point we can’t say what the gang fight is about.”
It is also disappointing that the school holidays have started. It’s so difficult because we now tell parents to keep their children in their homes because these gangsters, when they shoot, are unapologetic.
“Children need to live their lives without any fear. The gangsters shoot when the school is on and they care less about the school holidays. The shootings happen any time, there’s no warning, the message the gangsters are sending is that they are keeping the community of Manenberg hostage.
“We know what happened to that small child on Saturday. The community is in fear because if they are now shooting the little ones, we can but only imagine, so we have been pleading with these gangsters to stop the war,” said Adriaanse.
“The station is doing as much as they can, however, we don’t feel they have enough manpower to fight this thing alone.
Yes, there was assistance lent by the City because they are not permanently deployed in Manenberg.
“We need urgent assistance, we need the government to step up and intervene because we cannot afford to have what happened happen again. We condemn the shooting.
“We can only imagine what that family feels, the community is upset and said they will not allow this gang war to continue. We are fortunate that the child is still alive.”
Police spokesperson Joseph Swartbooi said Manenberg detectives registered an attempted murder.
“Reports suggested that the victim, a girl, sustained injuries as a result of gunshots near the corners of First Avenue and Downs Road.