Community despairs on police

2015-09-10 06:00

Community activists Nosipho Meyi and Mandla Mdosi with the parent of yet another victim of gang violence Kholiswa Msuthu in Nkanini. 

Mbongiseni Maseko

Community activists Nosipho Meyi and Mandla Mdosi with the parent of yet another victim of gang violence Kholiswa Msuthu in Nkanini. PHOTO: Mbongiseni Maseko

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A spate of gang violence over the weekend which included the stabbing to death of two people in the Nkanini and Kuyasa area have led the community top take matter into their own hands.

Before you start thinking of violent beatings at the hands of vigilantes this group of community leaders assured that they are not about that life.

Instead they believe in chasing out the troublesome youngsters who are involved in violent fights in the area.

“About a month ago we embarked on a campaign to rid ourselves of these boys who were terrorising the community.

It went well but some have crept back into the community and this weekend we were shocked and saddened by what happed,” said community leader Mandla Mdosi.

Mdosi said that even though they have had relative peace in the area, there was still animosity between tival gangs.

“These are young boys between the ages of 15 and 20 who are fighting each other. The major fight is between Nkanini and Kuyasa boys but we are not yet sure what the reason behind this animosity,” he said.

He said that even though their efforts to bring peace in the area had relative success, the flare ups were the result of lack of partnership in the community.

“Our biggest challenge is that the troublemakers are often the children of community leaders and when we try to sort out these matters, it results in conflict,” he said.

He said another problem was that residents had lost hope in the police and that often led to vigilantism, to which they were opposed.

To attest to this, the mother Zanekhaya Msotho, who was lucky to have survived a stabbing incident, did not bother to open a case against his assailants, because of the belief that ‘nothing would come of it’.

“Even though my son knows the people who did(stabbed) this to him, I know that they won’t be arrested...calling the police will be useless,” Kholiswa Msuthu said.

The 48 year old mother from Nkanini told City Vision that the community has given up hope in the police despite many meetings to address crime in the area.

“We have had many meetings and still see cases go unsolved, so for me going to the police is really a waste of time. All I can do is hope that something like this won’t happen again,” she said. Harare police could not be reached for comment

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