Cape Town - “Where are the illegal guns coming from?”
This is the question posed by Mitchells Plain ward councillor Bongani Ngcani, following a spate of shootings on the Cape Flats recently and a recent assessment by acting provincial commissioner MajorGeneral Thembisile Patekile, who said he “observed with concern the alarmingly high levels of serious violent crimes that are driven by the proliferation of illegal firearms”.
“Most of the killings in the community were gang-related but we are not sure who is in control and who is providing them with the guns,” Ngcani said.
“The police are turning a blind eye, they know where the gangs are residing. It’s like the gangs are in control.
“Why are there so many guns? If you are saying you are aware who these syndicates are, stop them. You have been given the badge to take control and ensure these illegal guns don’t come to our streets.
“We need more police visibility, more volunteers and more patrols. Police need to be on the ground with the community because there is a huge gap,” said Ngcani.
The Western Cape, particularly the Cape Town metropole, has just emerged from a week that saw multiple murders recorded across the city.
Taswil Daniels, 30, Jerome Isaacs, 36, Shane Williams, 37, and Ismail Abrahams, 64, were shot and killed at close range, while 37-year-old Mogamat Abrahams managed to escape the attack with a gunshot wound in Maureen Street, Lost City, on Saturday.
The day before, a 15-year-old girl was shot and killed when suspects started shooting randomly in Eland Avenue, Lotus River.
Morgan Munnik, 18, and a 13-yearold were shot dead in Beacon Valley, Mitchells Plain, on Thursday. Three other youths, aged 14, 16 and 18, were wounded in the same shooting.
In the past week, 30 illegal firearms and rounds of ammunition were seized, with several arrests made during various operations throughout the Western Cape, police said.
On the recent shootings, police spokesperson FC van Wyk said no arrests had been made as yet.
“Our detectives are working around the clock in an effort to find the perpetrators and to solve these cases.”
Police Minister Bheki Cele is expected to visit the Mitchells Plain police station today for a briefing on the recent murders in the area.
Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz also conducted an oversight visit to Mitchells Plain police to assess their efforts to curb gang violence in surrounding communities.
This was followed by a visit to some of the families of the deceased and wounded.