Apartheid cops were better - KwaMashu resident

2016-04-12 16:22
(Amanda Khoza, News24)

(Amanda Khoza, News24)

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Durban – Police during apartheid were better, a KwaMashu resident told senior police and prosecuting authority officials on Tuesday.

"Why is it that under the black government there are so many problems? How can we sit here as blacks and watch this happening? The apartheid police used to arrest the suspects," the man said.

He was addressing Hawks head Major General Berning Ntlemeza, Police Minister Nathi Nhleko, Correctional Services Minister Michael Masutha and National Prosecuting Authority boss Shaun Abrahams at an imbizo in Durban.

The man said he had been shot, but his attacker was never arrested.

"You say that we must take the numbers and report crime, but you never do anything about it. You must tell us what you are going to do," said the man.

The delegation visited the area after four people were shot and killed, execution style, at the KwaMashu hostel on Sunday.

The security top brass visited the hostel briefly before addressing the gathering at the KwaMashu sports grounds.

Residents said they had had enough of crime in the area.

Mbulelo Ngwane, a member of the Community Policing Forum, said when locals caught alleged criminals, police seemed reluctant to make arrests.

"The people that come into our homes while we are sleeping are these whoonga-smoking boys. When they come to steal, they are armed. When we catch them, we beat them up and then take them to the police station, but the police encourage them to open a case of assault against the members of the community. That is not right."

'Police get paid, but they don’t arrest suspects'

Another local claimed crime was rife because police were taking bribes.

"When we give the police information about suspects who do crime in the area, the police take the information and give it to the suspects in exchange for money. Police get paid, but they don’t arrest suspects," he told the delegation.

Abrahams assured residents that authorities were working hard to fight crime. He appealed for people to help police and to continue reporting crime.

"We cannot fight crime without the people of KwaMashu. Fighting crime is like fighting corruption. I frown upon policemen that behave in the manner that they do, by instead of arresting and charging the perpetrator of a serious crime, they charge the community that want to fight the crime."

Ntlemeza said he had received instructions to open new police units to deal with illegal firearms and drugs, as President Jacob Zuma had announced during his State of the Nation Address.

"I have visited the different provinces and pilot stations have been opened. We will launch the units at a later stage."

He warned people to get rid of illegal firearms.

"If someone in KwaMashu has an illegal firearm, you better get rid of it because we are coming for you," he said.

Read more on:    nathi nhleko  |  durban  |  crime

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