The officers had responded to a tip-off about criminal activity just after midnight when they came under fire near a local shop. The 24-year-old suspect, who had attempted to flee the scene, then opened fire on a second patrol vehicle.
The suspect was eventually wounded in his leg, and is currently under police guard in hospital.
Police spokesperson FC van Wyk said one officer was killed and two others were seriously injured.
“A second patrol vehicle responded to the shooting, and was also shot at by the same suspect. They returned fire and injured the suspect who is currently under police guard in hospital. A firearm was seized,” said Van Wyk.
National police spokesperson Vishnu Naidoo said the suspect was wounded in his left leg. The two wounded police officers were admitted to hospital and were receiving medical attention, said Naidoo.
The SANDF was last week deployed to patrol in 10 dangerous precincts, including Delft, to, among others, quell organised crime. Police Minister Bheki Cele said the SANDF would work with the police and other law enforcement agencies for three months.
As a result of the attack on the officers yesterday, a meeting was held at the Delft police station where the CPF called for the removal of the station commander. Delft CPF chairperson Charles George said the Delft community “is bleeding”.
“We condemn this killing and injuring of officers. (Yesterday) morning we held a meeting at the station where we demanded our cluster commander to have our Delft SAPS management removed as well as the station commander.
“We feel that crime in our area has spiralled out of control and we need a new sheriff in town to get a grip on the crime in our community. At the moment, gangsters are ridiculing police and are taking their lives and we cannot have that,” he said.
George said they were reassured that police deployment in the area would be increased. Van Wyk confirmed deployment in the area was intensified.
In Manenberg, CPF chairperson Abdul Kader said the army and the specialised units managed to stabilise the area a bit on Thursday, but he questioned how long it would last.
Philippi East community leader Ncedo Marikeni said they were worried that all they have been promised, including getting a station commander by Cele, would not be fulfilled.
Marikeni said July marked the seventh month since the station was without leadership. Residents have been urged to report illegal activity to Crime Stop at 08600 100.