Army could help with gang crisis

2012-08-02 08:06

Cape Town - The South African National Defence Force has got the go-ahead to help police restore peace and security to the conflict-ridden areas on the Cape Flats and in Port Elizabeth.

The Cape Argus reported that the army would be deployed following Western Cape Premier Helen Zille's written plea to President Jacob Zuma.

The Herald newspaper in Port Elizabeth reported on Wednesday that soldiers would also be sent to gang hotspots in the Eastern Cape city.

The PE newspaper said it had seen a national order sent by National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure chairperson Lieutenant-General Elias Mawela to both the provinces police commissioners instructing them to form a committee to deal with the gang crisis.

The order details the roles of the SANDF as well as that of other departments.

Zille apparently told Zuma that the situation had reached “crisis levels” and that “we cannot afford undue delays if we are to prevent the further loss of innocent lives”.

Ministers had apparently met on the gang problem and had reported to the president.

The army deployment would reportedly focus on “stability operations” like roadblocks and vehicle checkpoints, enhanced crime prevention and support for police officers.

There was no comment from the police on the issue.

  • Fazel - 2012-08-02 08:19

    Fighting violence with violence may not be the answer but at least the residents may get a good nights sleep.

      maylani.bezuidenhout - 2012-08-02 08:23

      And possibly not get shot on their way to school! I think its great. The army gets a much needed real workout and we send the message loud and clear that disruption to our way of life by gansters, rioters and criminals will not be tolerated. Let's see them have running gun battles with guys that can actually shoot.

      maylani.bezuidenhout - 2012-08-02 08:26

      Oh and I wanted to say - perhaps the army could teach our police a little something about discipline, service and not giving in to corruption. I'm not saying it doesn't happen in the military but maybe its time we let them do what they are trained to do here at home rather than as peace keepers in other countries. After all our taxes pay for their upkeep and training. No more Mrs nice guy!

      michael.vanrheenen.9 - 2012-08-02 08:34

      @ fazel.bolley - I beg to differ with you on that one... These gangsters don't understand "nice talk". If they get confronted, they kill to survive and who better to confront them than the SANDF! Well done Zille! And up yours Mthethwa!

      Fazel - 2012-08-02 08:34

      @Maylani-Rightly said , Kids dont need to be seeing more guns but at least they will be getting to school safe.

      aarchaic - 2012-08-02 08:46

      As soon as they can impliment Measures to insure the trade of ilegal guns and drugs dont happen things will start turning, Violence will drop and people will live longer either by not getting murdered in a street gang attack or living healthier not having drugs in their system. Great Project!

      Fazel - 2012-08-02 08:56

      @michael.vanrheenen.9- Point taken however speaking from the experience of growing up in a violent area, violence begets violence. Now I am not saying that teaching gangsters to breed butterflies as a path to serenity will change them ,but kids growing up and seeing more guys will have an impact.

      arm.witmens - 2012-08-02 09:14

      As an ex sadf member myself, and being deployed in the east rand over the elections in 94, i can say that the presence of armed soldiers will deter most people from going about shooting up schools and killing innocent people. With that said, i really hope they do not send in greenhorns with firstline ammunition. Ill discipline will cost lives and a trigger happy soldier with 48 rounds in a magazine can make for an interesting time on the streets.

      maylani.bezuidenhout - 2012-08-02 09:29

      @Bloodblane - Ja I must admit I'm picturing the army that all my friends were conscripted to but even more reason to send these boytjies out there for good workout.

      rachelle.potgieter.7 - 2012-08-02 09:40

      it is more like fighting violence with presence. Just their presence is already a deterrent.

      breinlekkasie.dodelikegif - 2012-08-02 09:45

      It is not about fighting violence with violence but an act of intimidation. Gangs are less likely to continue their petty wars if they are outgunned by a superior force. The pen might be mightier than the sword but I would never pull a pen in a sword/gun fight.

      BigChiefPlumbPudding - 2012-08-02 12:44

      I see some people placing a lot of faith in the SANDF.

      sachasea - 2012-08-02 13:03

      I agree with you Fazel. Have we learnt absolutely nothing from Mexico?! More than 60 000 lives have been lost there in the past 6 years, which coincides exactly with the appointment of the military by former president Calderon to go into these gang affected areas. If we start to see an escalation in people dying don't say I didn't warn you.

  • peter.krummeck.3 - 2012-08-02 08:22

    So, Minister Mthethwa, looks like you got it wrong - and Helen Zille got it right - again!

      maylani.bezuidenhout - 2012-08-02 08:36

      Next step, sending the army in to search and destroy all the tik dens and kitchens. That stuff is destroying the WC!

      Spiral - 2012-08-02 08:50

      The only reason he said no to start with was because it was the DA who asked...

  • iceman196 - 2012-08-02 08:25

    but minister the other day Helen asked for the army to be deployed in the cape flats and you said NO, looks like you got gravy all over your anc corrupt face, or didnt you get your kickbacks from the gangs this month, what an idiotic bunch

  • fanie.viljoen.73 - 2012-08-02 08:27

    I would love to know what Nathi Mtetwa will have to say about this. Hopefully this will bring relief to the poor people caught in the middle of this.

      sharon.erwin.96 - 2012-08-02 08:40

      I don't think you'll hear a peep out of Nathi - It would appear he cut off his nose to spite his face!

  • DrGonzoSA - 2012-08-02 08:40

    Yet another ANC U-turn

  • lynn.syme.1 - 2012-08-02 08:40

    So how is a load of overweight, unfit, underpaid morons going to fare? Don't forget our army were sent as peace-keepers in Central Africa only to rape and pillage those they were to protect. Hier kom k*k.

      Barefoot - 2012-08-02 08:45

      contentment far from you always have something to cry about? - no no please you cry for this it's given you cry that it's not good enough. and as for the army being overweight I'm yet to see that- the next time you see an overweight soldier please post a pic

      lynn.syme.1 - 2012-08-02 09:28

      Barefoot - do your own research. Start by using google and then enter "SANDF overweight" you will find your articles there. Here is one denial other than your own. Oh another Now do your own homework you lazy shyte.

      lynn.syme.1 - 2012-08-02 09:32

      Barefoot - read and take note "The SANDF record in Burundi from 2002 to 2008 included some 400 cases of misdemeanour and nearly 1,000 military trials for offences ranging from murder and rape to absence without leave and "rebelliousness", the report noted. "Taking into account the major role which the army must play in the government's priority task, namely, to deploy peacekeeping forces in Africa," the South African Army simply "does not have the funds to carry out proper training," and "it would not be able to obtain and maintain the needed equipment to carry out the roles it has been tasked to perform," Kruys pointed out."

      lynn.syme.1 - 2012-08-02 09:36

      Oh look Barefoot - many reports to be found: "THOUSANDS of South African soldiers deployed on international peacekeeping missions in Africa are standing trial for a range of serious criminal and military offences including murder, rape, assault and refusal to obey lawful commands." Suck it up dude!

      rachelle.potgieter.7 - 2012-08-02 09:42

      Easy Lynn. Not everyone is as described. We have dedicated men and women in our army (60%) who will do what is needed, and like in any organisation on our fair continent, we have those who are fat and unfit. Lets not make sweeping statements, please.

      BigChiefPlumbPudding - 2012-08-02 12:52

      Firstly we do not have an 'army'. In civilian terms: A modern army is made up of various highly specialised divisions, with huge quantities of extremely high tech equipment. We do not have this on a scale that comes anywhere near the true meaning of an 'army'. We have a Defence Force, and quite rightly so since we are not at War and we are generally not a nation of war mongers. We also do not have the economy to support a fully fledged modern day army. The last point is that sadly, our Defence Force has not exactly achieved gold in more recent history.

      johnny.arnold.167 - 2012-08-03 12:34

      speaking of overweight morons. Lynn, did you know that a soldier would not be marked *green* for deployments if he/she does not pass physical and medical standards set before 94 (same standard) So yes there are fatties, but they will never get the green light to be deployed outside a office

  • phumi.ntlabati - 2012-08-02 08:42

    Again our people would be subjected to curfews and be held under seige by the army like they are in a warzone like in Syria. This is not what we fought for and this reaffirms our call of why we should look for an alternative leadership in Mangaung. Zille and Plato have failed the people of the Cape Flats! There is no point of sending the army now because our progressive forces there (the poeple) have already done the DA's job and forced those gangs to sign a peace treaty or force being kicked out!

      Dipzen - 2012-08-02 08:52

      Very dumb comment there! People are dying because of gang violence and all you can do is politicize this safety issue. Yes if needs be let there be curfews cause at night is when there's a lot of gang activity and plus I'm sure this is temporary until safety from gang violence can be maximized. Wtf do you mean this isn't what we fought for? We also didn't fight for gangs and thugs to kill innocent people.

      Dipzen - 2012-08-02 08:53

      Very dumb comment there! People are dying because of gang violence and all you can do is politicize this safety issue. Yes if needs be let there be curfews cause at night is when there's a lot of gang activity and plus I'm sure this is temporary until safety from gang violence can be maximized. Wtf do you mean this isn't what we fought for? We also didn't fight for gangs and thugs to kill innocent people.

      Dipzen - 2012-08-02 08:53

      Very dumb comment there! People are dying because of gang violence and all you can do is politicize this safety issue. Yes if needs be let there be curfews cause at night is when there's a lot of gang activity and plus I'm sure this is temporary until safety from gang violence can be maximized. Wtf do you mean this isn't what we fought for? We also didn't fight for gangs and thugs to kill innocent people.

      gaby.hide.3 - 2012-08-02 09:15

      @Dipzen I agree. A national state of emergency should have been declared years ago. Us citizens have become the prisoners, while the lawless run amok and kill all races indicriminately.

      BigChiefPlumbPudding - 2012-08-02 09:35

      The true downfall of SA will be caused by people like this who simply have no grasp on reality, or how to deal with it. Just plain dumb ignorance.

      bob.mcmillen.564 - 2012-08-02 09:45

      BigChief, yes it is moron ANC supporters, like phumi, that threaten the future of this great country, the point is are we going to just lye down and let them or are we going to be strong like Zille and fight them, I am for staying and fighting.

      jeffrey.mnisi - 2012-08-02 09:49

      A stupid comment, Are you part of the gangs that are to be rooted out?

      prince.mafesh - 2012-08-02 09:54

      thnk u phumi,atleast sum1 is usin hs@hr brains 2 thnk in ths mata, da truth is zille has faild rulin western cape on it own, wat if she carries da whole s.a on hr shoulders shed fill our country wit soldiers nd god knws wat wld b nxt

      shaylene.stenger - 2012-08-02 11:05

      @ pumi and prince actually they havent failed the WC, its your goverment that has failed the people by doing nothing about the high crime and unempolyment problems in our country, they are so busy stealing from the inncocent that they couldnt care less about you and I.... the DA are actually trying to protect the inncocent unlike your goverment. So before you critisize the DA have a look at your own corrupt, stealing goverments flaws first!!!!! it all stems from right at the top... ie ANC!!!!!!!

      CORNHOLIO - 2012-08-02 14:03

      phumi & pronce are funny

      allan.keyzer - 2012-08-02 14:58

      Phumi and Prince you don't understand how government works. Safety and security is not under the control of the province it is controlled by the respective minister at national level and as such under the control of the ANC so to say the DA has failed the people is void of the truth.

  • njabs.ngcobo - 2012-08-02 08:44

    How do you controll people with an automatic assualt riffle? Bye bye ganagsters you gettin smoked!!! Js hope inocent residents dont get caught in the crossfire, coz i aint never heard of 1 person bein arrested by soldiers. These guys are trained to kill

      maylani.bezuidenhout - 2012-08-02 09:32

      No don't worry its going to be very controlled mostly, roadblocks, searches and the like. They don't want to put the cops noses out of joint so it will be very tame.. Just having them walking around looking tough with their assualt rifles should hopefully keep the drugged up gangsters cowering in their dens.

      rachelle.potgieter.7 - 2012-08-02 09:45

      jaaaaa njabs. Ever been in the army??? Easy my friend, check you facts, this is not 1980 and these are mostly a black peace keeping force, in other words, you own people - highly trained (in most cases). Lets not slate these guys - they are not all angels, but they are doing their jobs just as you are doing yours.

      wo0two0t - 2012-08-02 10:57

      Njabs are you really that stupid that you think the Army will just rock up guns blazing?! Wow we have alot of idiots in this country.

  • khutso.b - 2012-08-02 08:44

    Finally !!!... now the focus my shift to gruesome political killings in other provinces

  • leaproach.thekeeper - 2012-08-02 08:45

    Bring out the popcorn and let's watch the show. Gangsters will just love to lay their hands on a couple of assault rifles.

      CORNHOLIO - 2012-08-02 14:06

      depends if they feel lucky

  • bond.ndalo - 2012-08-02 08:49


      william.letsong.5 - 2012-08-02 09:34

      And thank you President Zuma for showing leadership by ignoring your dumb police minister and by deploying the army. It was his decision after all Ndalo.

      devon.riley.52 - 2012-08-02 09:41

      Well done to Mr Zuma as well, seem like he can do the right thing occasionally

      bob.mcmillen.564 - 2012-08-02 09:49

      Pathetic when an opposition leader has to tell the government how to handle a situation, and now you are trying to give credit to Zuma, he must just get out of the way, him and all his cadres and let a real party govern this country.

      devon.riley.52 - 2012-08-02 10:05

      Yeah you quite right, he's useless he must go.

      william.letsong.5 - 2012-08-02 10:21

      I'm not an ANC member nor am I a DA supporter, so I agree with the two of you bob.mcmillen and devon.riley that he is not the best president ever, but the fact is, that he is commander in chief and it was his decision to answer Zille's plea for the SANDF to be deployed. It is only wrong to give Zille all the credit. Give Zuma credit too. Unlike his dumb police minister, he looked beyond political lines and answered Zille's call. He made the right decision this time around and oh let me remind you devon.riley, once his out, Malema is back.

      CORNHOLIO - 2012-08-02 14:08

      ok , jz also gets a thumbs up

  • gregory.jurgens - 2012-08-02 08:51

    Obviously the police for is incompetent and incapable of doing what they paid to do. The country is turning into a war zone.

  • Spiral - 2012-08-02 08:52

    I refer to a previous headline: "Gang violence: Forget about army, Mthethwa says" Speak first, think later, hey Mthethwa.

      prince.mafesh - 2012-08-02 09:48

      Spiral evribody knws dat in evri country soldiers or da military hav bn usd as the lst resort, wen nuthn cn b done, do we wana say dat the crime is jst imposible 4 da police 2 bare, wre r the berrets

  • komorison - 2012-08-02 08:52

    Is this constitutional? Since when may the military be used to do civil police work? Worrying.

      leaproach.thekeeper - 2012-08-02 09:08

      In this country the paper the Constitution has been printed on has long ago been used as toilet paper.

      Spiral - 2012-08-02 09:09

      id trust the army over our undertrained, overfed friends any day.

      rachelle.potgieter.7 - 2012-08-02 09:48

      The army can be deployed when a "state of emergency" is declared by the government. This looks like a state of emergency to me. The Army works for the people of this country under the direction of the government. If the police can't cope ....

      william.letsong.5 - 2012-08-02 09:48

      See it as a peacekeeping mission LOL.

      Saleé Sithwell - 2012-08-02 11:13

      It's not constitutional! No state of emergency has been declared! It's against the policy of the separation of powers. Thirdly, it can only be a temporary fix and will ultimately give people a false sense of security.

  • allcoveredinNinjas - 2012-08-02 09:06

    Who are these gansters ? where do they live ? These aren't aliens , the communities need to look at themselves and where these gangs get their members. The community is not seperate or just a victim but complicit and intwined in the problem by supplying new recruits , offering refuge , funding , mislead police and enable this behavior because its someones brother , uncle , nephew or whatever involved. The army is a stright-jacket for the community , the solution requires collective intropection. Remember , there are no old gangsters.

      dave.kofang - 2012-08-02 17:21

      @Nijas i echo your sentiments.The whole community is to blame for this situation.If you want to see how the communities are complicit,just go to any court in cape town you'll see the support the gangsters get from people.When Khayelitsha residents clean their area of all scums,they are called barbaric but you will never hear about gang fights there cos the consequences are very harsh.

      dave.kofang - 2012-08-02 17:21

      @Nijas i echo your sentiments.The whole community is to blame for this situation.If you want to see how the communities are complicit,just go to any court in cape town you'll see the support the gangsters get from people.When Khayelitsha residents clean their area of all scums,they are called barbaric but you will never hear about gang fights there cos the consequences are very harsh.

  • andre.vandeventer.16 - 2012-08-02 09:33

    The police have finally acknowledged that they have lost their battle against crime. It is because they are (except for a few good ones here and there) rotten from the head down to the bottom. The army's task is to defend our borders!

  • walter.lebza - 2012-08-02 09:38

    Please when you go there, take video cameras with you. We want to see you klapping these toothless gangs.

  • storm.trooper.125 - 2012-08-02 09:39

    lol minister of safety and security said last time..forget about the army, it just shows you the lack of interest from the anc.. a oposition party had to request help from the army.

  • william.letsong.5 - 2012-08-02 09:46

    Thank you Premier Zille for pocketing your pride to ask President Zuma to deploy the SANDF on the Cape Flats. And thank you President Zuma for showing leadership beyond political lines by answering her plea. Thanks both of you for working together to win back our streets. Only prob is these gangs might set up camp in other areas since the army will only be deployed in parts of the Cape Flats.

  • Michael - 2012-08-02 09:48

    Oh gee, so we're going with Helen Zille's idea after all. In spite of the anc idiots who thought it wasn't a good idea.

  • keigan.hart - 2012-08-02 10:04

    It's about time that the Army did something constructive with their time and budget. Let's just hope they shoot the right people.

      stanley.marries - 2012-08-03 07:29

      ''something constructive''???? you really think the only reason for the exsistance for an Army is war??? you know what happens during wars??? you know the role of an Army?

      rusted.axe - 2012-08-16 09:34

      Yes Armies' only purpose is war. Young people sitting around with the optimistic ambition of "seeing some action". If you want to protect your people. Start at home and leave the other people to manage their own homes. But retarded thinking will place this strategy in reverse to justify their "need for organised violence, threat and military swaggering".

      rusted.axe - 2012-08-16 09:37

      The gangster mentality at work. As I said, whether it be uniforms or tattoos or rugby jerseys. Most people's koppe are far too plat to grasp what I just said. Just watch the comments :)

  • neville.prinsloo.35 - 2012-08-02 10:41

    About time we used the army! Let's restore order for the sake of the people of the Cape Flats.

  • wayne.warren83 - 2012-08-02 10:43

    "There's a reason we separate military and the police: one fights the enemy of the state, the other serves and protects the people. When the military becomes both, then the enemies of the state tend to become the people." -Commander William Adama

      pieter.pan.184 - 2012-08-03 04:24

      Really? You are quoting Battlestar Galactica? a T.V SERIES?????????? What is wrong with you? I really hope you were making a joke.

      stanley.marries - 2012-08-03 07:26


  • Billy - 2012-08-02 16:07

    hmm interesting, they went through with it afterall. i wonder if they are expecting this to backfire on zille. i hope this creates much needed pressure release for the police so they can do their jobs more efficiently.

  • YvetteT1968 - 2012-08-02 19:21

    About time! I've been saying this for ages bring in the Army they're sitting around doing nothing getting paid by the taxpayers so let's use them. Put them on patrol in our neighbourhoods, businesses, outside schools, shopping centres. Make our Country safe again I would rather have soldiers patrolling than criminals! The police cannot manage, 120 odd police have been fired alone this year for corruption and criminal behaviour. Helen Zile You Beauty! You should be President!

      nicky.jafarie - 2012-08-02 19:44

      What else? Looking after your house let Helen Zille sort out her province. U want her to be a President more unmarked graves. DA or what it still some people of NP.

      stanley.marries - 2012-08-03 07:24

      Ignorance leads to incapability!!...why do you think the Army is doing just because there isn't a war going on????...Do you know the responsibilties of an Army??? ai ai..ja nê...little knowledge is very dangerous!!...Do you really want there to be a war first before you can be satisfied with the country's soldiers????...I wonder if you know what happend during wars except for what you see in movies and on the luxury of having FREEDOM will be gone. Think about that before you post comments like this about the Army doing the way...ALL soldiers pay tax,so it's not only your few cents that pays their salaries!!

  • rusted.axe - 2012-08-16 09:31

    No We need to give every household access to proper defence. Stop crime as it is being committed. Not by retroactive swaggering in uniforms. We do not need police. Police is the governments way of legitimising gangsterism. "Pay up or I march you to jail at gunpoint". "Give me your wallet or I shoot you right here." Whether they wear tattoos or uniforms, its the same mentality and its time we wake up to it.

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