Angered over death

2018-10-16 06:02
The community of Hanover Park carried the body of the young man to a mosque close to his home.PHOTOS: AISHAH CASSIEM

The community of Hanover Park carried the body of the young man to a mosque close to his home.PHOTOS: AISHAH CASSIEM

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Hundreds of mourners gathered in Surwood Walk last week to show their support to the grieving family of 27-year-old Ameerodien Noordien.

Fatimah and Mogamat Alwie Noordien lost their son in gunfire close to their family home last Friday.

The young man was shot multiple times while standing outside a shop with three other bystanders.

Ameerodien, a passionate volunteer at humanitarian organisation Gift of the Givers (GOG), was laid to rest according to Islamic rights last Tuesday and is the latest victim of ongoing gang violence in the area.

Police presence was visible on the day of the young man’s funeral, with several police vans circling the family’s home. It is believed that the suspect responsible for Ameerodien’s death was in nearby courts at the time.

According to GOG, on the morning of his death, Ameerodien had just returned with a group of other volunteers from the Eastern Cape where they had taken water to farms badly affected by drought.

Imtiaz Sooliman, the founder of GOG, said Ameerodien wanted to get out of poverty in a dignified way – no drugs, no gangsterism, no violence, but only honesty, integrity, hard work and lawful earnings – to take care of his family.

Sooliman says that opportunity was violently terminated on the afternoon of Friday 5 October, when the young man was struck by three bullets in the back and one in the head.

In an open letter to police minister Bheki Cele, Sooliman questioned how many more youth and children needed to die before action was taken as a nation to stem the endemic community disorder of gangsterism, drugs and violence.

“The need to make South Africa safer for its people cannot be more urgent than the present. Western Cape needs a Westbury-style intervention and we call upon you (Cele) to make this a reality.

“It is time for gangsters to sit back, reflect and ponder that the havoc, pandemonium, pain and suffering that they wreak, will it ever bring serenity to their own souls. Reformation has to come from within. It has been done many times before and it certainly can be done today,” added Sooliman.

Cele paid his respects to the grieving family last Monday, when he addressed the media and the public in front of the family’s home.

“This is something that hits all of us, but nothing close to what the family feels. The government is not only here to mourn but to also seek and provide answers to the family,” said Cele.

Cele enforced a 48-hour deadline to arrest the suspects in the murder of the young man, on the day of his visit, and said that an anti-gang unit had already been created to address the increase in gang violence on the Cape Flats.

He also deployed more police to Hanover Park overnight, to cut off the oxygen that feeds gangsterism in the community.

The father of the deceased could not hold back his tears as he expressed his feelings to the minister.

“The last time we saw my son was a few minutes before the incident. His mother told him to come straight home after going to the shop. She told him this, knowing what the community is like.

“He went out of the house and said he will be back immediately. During the time he was away, we heard gunshots. I ran inside the house, but when I saw my little daughter running and screaming, I realised that something was wrong.

“She said Ameerodien was shot. I just ran to him and held him in my arms. He was gone. I couldn’t do anything. I just threw myself next to him and asked why,” explained the teary father.

“He was a respectful boy. He was not a troublemaker and always assisted his parents. He washed and dressed his mother and loved her so much. I will never get another son like Ameerodien. He had a good heart for both his family and for the community, always helping where he can.”

On Thursday afternoon, Captain Lance Goliath, spokesperson for Philippi Police Station, confirmed that a 21-year-old suspect had been arrested in connection with Ameerodien’s death.

The suspect appeared in the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court yesterday and is currently still in police custody as investigations continue.

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