MEC warns criminals after Imbali murders

2019-06-24 12:33
(Photo: Getty/Gallo Images)

(Photo: Getty/Gallo Images)

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 “The buck stops here.”

This was the warning by KZN Transport, Community Safety and Liaison MEC Mxolisi Kaunda to criminals who have been holding Imbali under siege.

Kaunda, who was joined by SAPS uMgungundlovu South cluster management and a heavy police contingent, was speaking at Imbali Unit 1 following a spate of hijackings and murders in the area.

He said police had already come up with plans to stop the heinous crimes. “I can’t divulge some of the plans because it would give the criminals an upper hand,” he told residents.

“But some plans include police patrols. I want you to go back home and warn the criminals because the police are going to be fighting fire with fire.”

This month, The Witness reported that three people were hijacked in Imbali in one weekend. In one incident, a police officer was wounded when she was shot in the leg during a botched hijacking.

On social media, VW Polo drivers from Imbali had also been warned to avoid driving at night, especially around the township.

Kaunda said 32 murders had occurred in the Plessislaer policing precinct, which Imbali falls under, in 2018, while in the last three months 36 people had already been killed. “This is nonsense. It doesn’t make any sense. I’m giving police until the first week of August to conduct and survey this area and when we come back here, I want all the names of the people they have arrested. We are not going to take this lying down,” he said.

He also said he will act against police officers who collude with criminals, terrorising communities. “The first intervention to be made will be to arrests the criminals, that should happen in the shortest possible time.

“We are also going to be very hard on any police officer that colludes with criminals.”

Meanwhile, residents who attended the meeting said although they were determined to fight crime in the area, it was difficult without enough police assistance. “The satellite police station in Imbali has been rendered useless. It’s just an information desk where you go to fill in affidavits. You can’t report crime there as there are only two officers on duty,” said one resident.

Another resident, Wendy Duma, criticised police officers at the Plessislaer police station for “dragging their feet” in solving cases.

“When you report at the Plessislaer police station, nothing happens. They are too comfortable and maybe management should consider a shake up at that police station. The police officers at the charge office are very rude.”

Sindi Ngidi reiterated Duma’s sentiments, adding that since her brother’s murder last September, they had not received a single update from the police on investigations.

Kaunda assured the residents that while the police had limited resources, they will strain every nerve to ensure that the residents are safe.

Meanwhile, on Friday morning Kaunda also visited Weenen, outside Estcourt, where two women and a child were attacked last week while they were sleeping.

Police believe that the murder toll in Weenen, which is currently at 39, emanates from a long-running faction fight between alleged criminals from Nhlawe and KwaMadondo.

This was the warning by KZN Transport, Community Safety and Liaison MEC Mxolisi Kaunda to criminals who have been holding Imbali under siege.

Kaunda, who was joined by SAPS uMgungundlovu South cluster management and a heavy police contingent, was speaking at Imbali Unit 1 following a spate of hijackings and murders in the area.

He said police had already come up with plans to stop the heinous crimes. “I can’t divulge some of the plans because it would give the criminals an upper hand,” he told residents.

“But some plans include police patrols. I want you to go back home and warn the criminals because the police are going to be fighting fire with fire.”

This month, The Witness reported that three people were hijacked in Imbali in one weekend. In one incident, a police officer was wounded when she was shot in the leg during a botched hijacking.

On social media, VW Polo drivers from Imbali had also been warned to avoid driving at night, especially around the township.

Kaunda said 32 murders had occurred in the Plessislaer policing precinct, which Imbali falls under, in 2018, while in the last three months 36 people had already been killed. “This is nonsense. It doesn’t make any sense. I’m giving police until the first week of August to conduct and survey this area and when we come back here, I want all the names of the people they have arrested. We are not going to take this lying down,” he said.

He also said he will act against police officers who collude with criminals, terrorising communities. “The first intervention to be made will be to arrests the criminals, that should happen in the shortest possible time.

“We are also going to be very hard on any police officer that colludes with criminals.”

Meanwhile, residents who attended the meeting said although they were determined to fight crime in the area, it was difficult without enough police assistance. “The satellite police station in Imbali has been rendered useless. It’s just an information desk where you go to fill in affidavits. You can’t report crime there as there are only two officers on duty,” said one resident.

Another resident, Wendy Duma, criticised police officers at the Plessislaer police station for “dragging their feet” in solving cases.

“When you report at the Plessislaer police station, nothing happens. They are too comfortable and maybe management should consider a shake up at that police station. The police officers at the charge office are very rude.”

Sindi Ngidi reiterated Duma’s sentiments, adding that since her brother’s murder last September, they had not received a single update from the police on investigations.

Kaunda assured the residents that while the police had limited resources, they will strain every nerve to ensure that the residents are safe.

Meanwhile, on Friday morning Kaunda also visited Weenen, outside Estcourt, where two women and a child were attacked last week while they were sleeping.

Police believe that the murder toll in Weenen, which is currently at 39, emanates from a long-running faction fight between alleged criminals from Nhlawe and KwaMadondo.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  crime
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