Get rid of toy guns

2019-07-23 06:25

Grassy Park Community Policing Forum (CPF) is planning to lead a march against toy guns within their precinct.

Although no date has yet been set for the march, the CPF has decided to heed a call by Grassy Park residents after a public meeting held in Ottery on Tuesday 9 July.

CPF spokesperson Philip Bam told the public some crimes were committed using imitation firearms.

He said it was difficult to distinguish whether a firearm pointed at you or someone else is real or not. He said imitation guns pose risks to the community, directly and indirectly, citing crime.

Despite being used to commit crime, Bam said the use of the toy firearms is likely to make children targets for gang recruitments.

He said gangs watch how one carries themselves, their behaviour and then start luring them to do their deeds.

“A child used to play with a gun would be easily tempted into using it for other reasons, be it a real gun or a toy. We need to stop buying these for children and start talking about its dangers at our homes. We will also need to challenge the law to be changed and prohibit the selling of these toys from the shops,” Bam said.

He said in volatile communities where shootings take place at any time, one is likely to become a victim and get hurt if their toy firearms is mistaken for a real one at the wrong time. “There was an incident where a boy was shot because he was presumed to be a threat. He only had his toy gun, innocently playing in the street. We need to prevent those incidents in our communities,” said Bam.

He made examples of international countries that have started acting against imitation firearms.

The presentation was well-received, and residents identified local markets to be targeted.

No details of the possible march were discussed but both parties emphasised that action would be taken soon.

This comes at a time where the Grassy Park precinct, like many other areas in the Cape Flats, is affected by the scourge of violent shootings.

The CPF and residents said they cannot allow it to continue as it forces them live in fear.

Colonel Dawood Laing, Grassy Park Station Commander, admitted that the number of violent incidents was indeed alarming and needed interventions. V Do you agree with the idea of removing toy guns from the market? Please email Nomzamo.Yuku@peoplespost.co.za.

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