LETTER: Langa’s proud and heroic past being eroded by gangs

2017-01-12 06:01

Langa, the oldest formal township in Cape Town is renown to have produced jazz musicians, actors, footballers, rugby and cricket players of note.

However, the township is now in a crisis.

Teenagers become school drop-outs and, by extension, become gangsters, which has become a blot on the landscape of this historic township.

Gangsterism has already claimed the lives of about four teenagers between November and late December 2016.

The latest victim is Ayanda Vava, an eighteen year old who was shot and stabbed to death on the 26th of December.

He was laid to rest last Saturday.

In 2011, Trevor Manuel, then Minister in the Presidency for National Development, released a diagnostic document and vision statement for 2030.

At a media briefing in parliament, Manuel called for public comment on Nine key problems facing society at large.

And these were: Poor education, divided communities, uneven public service performance, unsustainable economic climate, high disease incidence, the burden of unemployment, existing patterns of separateness, a crumbling infrastructure and endemic corruption.

I fully supported the National Planning Commission concept of 2030.

However, with teen school drop-outs, teen gangsterism, teen murders and juvenile delinquency, we still have respected elders, the middle-aged populace and youth, including a booming tourism industry for Langa and business interest to protect.

This is a wake up call for the Langa community, based on the recommendations of the National Planning Commission to set up proper parenting structures, strong leadership, united communities and to instil in our children the values that have kept Langa going for all these years in the past.

Participation in sports, an educated society and respect for the elders are a cornerstone towards a prosperous Langa community.

We need to put a strong emphasis on these areas with the assistance of the National Planning Commission to help get these teenagers- who dropped out of school because of fears of gangsters- back to the classroom.

I have a strong desire to work with the community to ensure that there are no more drop-outs.

As parents, it is our responsibility to protect our children’s educational needs.

If we share the same vision, this exercise tends to ensure that a child is fully committed in his or her education and is trained to grasp the essence of education.

The vision of 2030 should give us a positive feedback.

Thabo Matiso LANGA

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