Your days are numbered, Gauteng police commissioner tells ’Boko Haram’ gang
Pretoria - Groups such as Boko Haram terrorise communities in Nigeria, and people using similar bullying tactics had no space in the country, Gauteng police commissioner Lieutenant-General Elias Mawela said on Thursday.
He was leading Operation O Kae MolaO in Mamelodi, where he warned that the gang would not be allowed to hold the community to ransom.
“We are aware of the so-called Boko Haram group that is terrorising Mamelodi, and we are closing down on them.
“In fact, I don't want to give them that name because the only Boko Haram is in Nigeria and not on my turf.
“Your days are numbered and the net is gradually closing on you,” said Mawela.
He said they had enough intelligence from various stakeholders, including community members, who were informing them of the group’s modus operandi, including the hierarchy of the group, where they lived, and what projects they were taking over in Tshwane.
Mawela said they had also recruited detectives who were supported by police intelligence and forensic investigators assisted by prosecutors. “We are busy, and once the time is ready we are going to pounce on them and we won't lose our grip on them.”
Proving true to the police’s intelligence, the multidisciplinary team, including the defence force and the Tactical Response Team, hit the ground running from about 7am, and raided the Sun Valley Hostels, which were said to be one of the many turfs the group had hijacked.
“There’s nowhere to run, we are coming for you,” said Mawela.
With tankers and a convoy of police vehicles, morning traffic was affected as motorists and bystanders looked on as law enforcement members searched the area.
Mawela said the Heatherley landfill site area was under the gang’s rule.
Residents said the situation had become worse over the years.
Mawela spoke to some recyclers who were visibly scared to be seen talking to the police.
He circled the landfill site looking for suspicious looking people.
Several undocumented people were also arrested during the sting operation.
Two roadblocks were set up, first along Stormvoel Road between Mamelodi and Eersterust, and later along Solomon Mahlangu Drive.