Two new Disaster Management recruits, barely a month in their new jobs, were robbed at gunpoint yesterday morning, June 23, whilst delivering relief packages to victims of a shack fire in the Qaqawuli-township.
Thomas Cameron, Senior Disaster Management official, said that whilst the man (34) and woman (33) tried to telephonically contact the intended recipients of the aid, two armed men knocked on the windows of the bakkie and demanded their cell phones and any other valuables.
“The men took their personal cell phones, pulled the keys out of the ignition and threw it on the roof of a nearby house. The officials retrieved the keys of their official vehicle and went to the nearest police station to report the crime. Unfortunately, these regular robberies not only create unbearable working conditions for municipal employees from most of our departments, it prevents service delivery from taking place. As a result, the intended beneficiaries could not be assisted as they were in Motherwell and not in the area to receive the goods,” Cameron said.
The two traumatised employees will be advised to seek assistance at the municipal wellness centre in an attempt to help them deal with the traumatic experience.
Disaster Management officials assist victims of natural disasters with relief such as blankets, mattresses, small stoves, food parcels and sanitary products depending on what the department has in stock.