Camera under the bridge

District Six residents are set to benefit from a security boost planned by local councillors.

New CCTV equipment and surveillance is planned for District Six by ward councillors Dave Bryant and Brandon Golding. The suburb falls in both their wards.

A portion of each councillor’s ward allocation budget will go towards the surveillance.

The camera will be installed underneath the Russell Street bridge.

Projects to be funded from the ward allocation budgets of 2017/18 were confirmed last week during a subcouncil 16 meeting. The projects are expected to start rolling out from July, Bryant explains.

“One of the key hotspots pointed out to us during engagements with the community is the area underneath the bridge in Russell Street where there are reports of muggings and antisocial behaviour. We will be installing CCTV surveillance in the area which will be monitored 24/7.”

The Upper District Six Neighbourhood Watch has welcomed the funding for the CCTV camera. The watch will also receive new two-way radio equipment.

According to Daya Singh, the watch’s deputy treasurer, the community has noticed an increase in street people gathering under the bridge despite there being a number of shelters within walking distance. Their presence has raised concerns about a fire risk, made more alarming by the fact that the bridge is a national highway, she says.

Criminal activities like drug deals and prostitution have been noted by the watch under the bridge, Singh alleges.

Cape Town Central police spokesperson Captain Ezra October confirms a number of people are living on the street around the bridge and that drug activity in the area has been reported.

Both councillors recently joined the local community policing forum for a late-night crime-free initiative across the wards.

“Although the police are the lead agency when it comes to fighting crime, the City of Cape Town is fully committed to work together with all agencies to assist where we can. Part of this commitment includes empowering communities such as District Six that require extra attention,” Golding adds.

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