Cape Town - 140402 - The People Against Gangsterism and Drugs (PAGAD) continued with it's “Save Our Children: Remove the Merchants” Campaign by embarking on a Legal Mass March in Tafelsig, Mitchells Plain. Reporter: Natasha Bezuidenhout Picture: David Ritchie

Cape Town - The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) came out in support of Pagad as the city rerouted an anti-drug march away from suspected drug merchants in Mitchells Plain on Wednesday night.

A small crowd of residents joined People Against Drugs and Gangsterism (Pagad) on their peaceful march. Among them were EFF members showing their solidarity with Pagad and its anti-drug drives.

 Pagad spokesman Cassiem Parker said authorities had tried to stop Pagad marches from taking place over a long period of time but they had finally been granted permission.

“We have the constitutional right to occupy streets in rejection of drugs and gangsterism.

“We believe that we must stop the drug trade.”

He said the organisation understood the community’s problems.

“People feel safe when Pagad is in the community although there is a fear factor put into people by the authorities.”

EFF provincial convener Nazier Paulsen said the party and Pagad had a common purpose in improving conditions in communities.

“We are a vanguard of communities here in the Western Cape and we are plagued by gangsterism and drugs. That is why we wanted to show our support for this march because we cannot allow these things to happen anymore.”

Residents came out to watch as Pagad and EFF members marched down roads with a loudspeaker blaring: “We want a drug-free and gang-free society.”

Pagad leader Abdus-Salaam Ibrahim said: “The initial route had six drug houses. This tells us that the city is aware of the problems and they asked us to divert our route.

“We accepted the diversion. We know this is only the beginning stages and we showed authorities we can behave.”

Cape Argus