“It’s now getting to a point where families in communities and many people who rely on odd jobs as an income are not being paid on a regulated basis." Picture: Marvin Charles/Cape Argus
“It’s now getting to a point where families in communities and many people who rely on odd jobs as an income are not being paid on a regulated basis." Picture: Marvin Charles/Cape Argus

Lockdown is hurting a lot of people very badly - JP Smith

By Marvin Charles Time of article published Apr 17, 2020

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Cape Town - The City’s law enforcement officers enforcement has responded to more than 44 liquor store burglaries and three lootings of spaza shops in the city during lockdown, with hot spots identified in Manenberg and Mitchells Plain.

Mayco member for Safety and Security JP Smith said: “We are working with police to talk about various options. The City is guiding shop

owners to change their approach and we are suggesting that some shops close the security gates and serve the public through the gates, hire security guards if you are in a high-risk area, or install burglar bars.

“Many of the shops targeted have been smaller businesses.”

Robbie Roberts, an operational co-ordinator for law enforcement, said there had been ongoing communication with the relevant role-players.

“We have a metropole cluster team reacting to any looting incidents,” Roberts said. “We understand there were six instances reported during this week.”

Smith said liquor stores had also been offered space to store any goods temporarily.

“Only 38 liquor stores in the city have decided to take up that offer (but) we are expecting more to take up that offer,” he said.

A contributing factor to looting and civil unrest in and around the identified hot spots had been an issue of food security, Smith said.

“It’s now getting to a point where families in communities and many people who rely on odd jobs as an income are not being paid on a

regulated basis and not working.”

“(The lockdown) is hurting a lot of people very badly and I think with the extension of the lockdown, there is a degree of desperation.

“We are getting many queries on this matter. We think it’s vital people understand that Sassa (South African Social Security Agency) is responsible for distributing supplementary assistance.”

Sassa offices were closed on the directive of Minister of Social Development Lindiwe Zulu at the end of last month as part of lockdown regulations.

Smith said the City has allocated R15 million for 92 feeding schemes to provide hot meals to as many as

20 000 Capetonians in need.

@MarvinCharles17

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