Cape Town - The imminent release of notorious gang leader Rashied Staggie has already provoked a fallout within gangs in Manenberg, says the Community Police Forum (CPF) in the area.
Staggie, who served 10 years of his 15-year jail sentence and who according to court papers admitted to being the leader of the Hard Livings, is to be let out on day parole from September 24 and will have to report back to prison nightly for incarceration. He is later expected to be released on full parole.
On Wednesday the Manenberg CPF’s spokesman Kader Jacobs said gang violence in the area appeared to be increasing.
He said since the announcement that Staggie would be released on parole, there had been a number of incidents.
It appeared gangsters were trying to climb ranks and secure positions higher in their gangs before Staggie’s release.
“There seems to be in fighting (within gangs) at the moment. It’s a power struggle. Obviously there’s a lot of jostling for positions,” Jacobs said.
A week ago alleged Hard Livings gang leader Donovan Uys and a friend were killed in Manenberg. Days later there was another fatal shooting, Kader said.
As part of Staggie’s parole conditions, he would be electronically monitored.
Kader said aside from this, neighbourhood watch members had been told to monitor who Staggie visited once released so they could try and keep track of who he was communicating with.
He said Staggie’s release was “a major concern for us”.
Staggie was found guilty of giving orders and participating in the kidnapping and rape of a teenage girl from Mitchells Plain. Later, while he was in custody, he was convicted of stealing weapons from the Faure police armoury and sentenced to 13 years to run concurrently with the 15-year rape sentence.
Aside from Manenberg, the Lavender Hill and Steenberg areas had also experienced a surge in gang violence.
On Wednesday the Steenberg CPF’s spokesman Kevin Southgate said there had been a number of shootings over the last few weeks.
“The communities of Lavender Hill and Steenberg and the surrounds are overcome by fear,” he said.
Southgate met police yesterday and said a concern from officers was that spent cartridges, needed as evidence, were being removed from shooting scenes. It was not clear who was removing these, but he said it was possible gangs had “sweepers” - people tasked with removing evidence after a shooting.
Police spokesman Frederick van Wyk said that a 21-year-old man had been shot multiple times in Lavender Hill early yesterday and died. Van Wyk said a 29-year-old man had been killed in Steenberg after being shot twice late on Tuesday. The man had tried to drive away from his three attackers, but crashed and died at the scene.