Johannesburg - South Africans should fight crime the way they fought apartheid, the IFP said on Wednesday, in response to the mugging of SABC journalists outside Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg.
“The battle against crime is a fight that we must fight with the same vigour our forefathers used to dismantle the pillars of apartheid,” Inkatha Freedom Party national chairman Blessed Gwala said in a statement.
SABC contributing editor Vuyo Mvoko, foreign editor Sophie Mokoena, and journalist Chriselda Lewis were preparing for a live crossing on Tuesday night after covering the arrival of Zambian President Edgar Lungu at the hospital. The cameras were rolling and the faces of the muggers were clearly visible.
Mvoko said later in an SABC interview that one of the men threatened him with a gun when he did not immediately give up his cellphone.
Gwala said most people accused of such crimes were repeat offenders and the criminal justice system had not done a good job of putting violent criminals behind bars.
“We must improve the justice system by improving social and economical factors so that the initial conditions influencing individuals to commit crimes is negligible.”
The communications minister condemned the mugging.
“This incident and other similar criminal activities that occur across the country impact negatively on individuals and society as a whole as well as the developmental efforts of South Africa,” Faith Muthambi said in a statement.
Muthambi encouraged people to work closely with law enforcement agencies to reduce crime.
Earlier, Gauteng police commissioner Lt-Gen Lesetja Mothiba said police would do everything they could to ensure the suspects were caught.
“We are shocked at the brazen nature of this crime. The cameraman managed to film the incident and the faces of the suspects could be clearly seen,” he said.