Army to be deployed to gang-ridden areas by Christmas - Mbalula

2017-11-15 19:02
Police Minister Fikile Mbalula and Western Cape police commissioner Lieutenant-General Khombinkosi Jula. (Tammy Petersen)

Police Minister Fikile Mbalula and Western Cape police commissioner Lieutenant-General Khombinkosi Jula. (Tammy Petersen)

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Cape Town – By Christmas, the army will be deployed to areas worst affected by gang activity, Police Minister Fikile Mbalula has promised at the Philippi East police station.

And, in addition to the Western Cape, police will probably add parts of the Eastern Cape, Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal to a list of hotspots in need of intervention.

“It is going to happen. We are processing it in terms of operational plans. Thereafter, the president will give us the green light,” he said.

“It will happen before Christmas.”

However, Mbalula explained that, before the army is deployed, they must be linked to a specific operation for a specified period: “We don’t want society to feel under siege… that the army has arrived and there is a coup d'état.

“It will be police-led, in violent areas, where gangsters are actually taking over, doing what they’re doing.”

Last month he announced that he had asked the SA National Defence Force (SANDF) to help tackle crime in the Western Cape and Gauteng, subject to the president’s approval.

READ: Mbalula asks army to help quell violence in WC and Gauteng

Police were in the process of constructing a plan with clear directives, Mbalula said.

“When the president signs, he must sign knowing where they are going, with specific periods and which operations they are going to undertake. It is taking some time, but it’s going to happen. I can assure you.”

The deployments would be guided by crime statistics and the police’s operational plan, he added.

“We will announce when we’re ready to deploy."

Read more on:    sandf  |  fikile mbalula  |  cape town  |  crime

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