Drop in robberies

2017-03-22 12:37

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About 100 people attended a meeting of the local policing subcommittee forum at South Peninsula High School last Tuesday.

The meeting was held to tell residents in sector 1 of the Wynberg policing cluster (Plumstead, Steurhof, Diep River, Southfield and Golf Links Estate) about the police’s back-to-basics programme and to introduce the subcommittee forum members – Alexis Serra, chairperson, Lowena Carolus, vice-chairperson, Anja Gerber, secretary, and Ursula Schenker, treasurer. They all live in sector 1.

The area faces a continuous challenge of drugs and petty crimes, but incidents of other crimes like property crimes and robberies have halved since the beginning of this year. This drop in crime has been attributed to the police being more visible and patrolling hotspots, as well as the partnership formed with residents.

Constable Zak Marais, the sector 1 coordinator, has asked for residents’ help.

“Drugs are a problem in this area. We have noticed that the drug-related incidents are mostly happening in the council houses. We are engaging the City of Cape Town on this and we are making progress. As the police we have decided to step in and we are calling on the community to work with us. Phone us and report incidents so that we have it recorded,” says Marais.

Ward councillor Carol Bew has refuted his claim that drug dealing was taking place in the council houses.

“There has to be evidence that it’s happening in council houses. We know it is not all houses as well. Those convicted of the crime, they will be evicted from council housing.”

Adv Jerome Norris, representing the provincial minister of community safety, says neighbourhood watches had to organise themselves.

“There is so much that can be done to fight crime. Organise yourselves and continue to be the eyes and ears of the community. At times it can be disheartening when criminals are acquitted because of some technicalities. You must be happy that you helped the community take away some drugs or anything that might be harmful to the community,” he says.

Lieutenant-Colonel Mzwandile Gqabi, commander of Diep River Police Station, has applauded everyone involved in fighting crime.

“When dealing with crime don’t put emotions in. The neighbourhood watch must not operate on emotions,” he says.

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