Fed-up residents march on Mpuma police station

2016-12-16 08:18
SA police. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

SA police. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Bushbuckridge - The Bushbuckridge Residents Association (BRA) has accused the Acornhoek station commander Colonel Matane Mphahlele of neglecting local residents.

BRA members marched on the station on Wednesday to hand over a memorandum calling for him to be removed from his post. Captain Lindiwe Ngozelweni received the document.

Their march was prompted by the escape of eight prisoners from the police station’s holding cells on December 7. 

Acornhoek police spokesperson Nonyane Mpo said the prisoners, with the exception of one, were back in the cells. They were working hard to catch him. She said it took a mere two days to recapture the other seven.

In the memorandum, the BRA demanded that the police station be rebuilt to avoid overcrowding.

The residents alleged that job appointments at the police station were determined by tribal affiliation, and that the Acornhoek policing area was no longer conducive to tourism and investment, and that the streets were no longer safe to walk in.

In the past three months, several serious cases had been opened at the station, and nobody had been arrested. The suspects were known, but were still in the streets, the BRA said.

“Last week criminals escaped from the police station where they were meant to be kept for the freedom of our community; now where do we run to when the security people we are meant to depend on are not dependable?” the BRA asked.

BRA leader Delta Mokoena said they did not feel safe.

“Even when the police decide to lazily arrest the thugs, they still won’t manage to retain them at the cells or to lock them up for good,” he said.

Murder, looting, and rape were a trend in the town, he said.

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