Leaders of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa have declared their support for the Shutdown Movement and other actions by communities fighting against gangsterism and other crimes.
The leaders were reacting after residents on the Cape Flats in Cape Town and in Westbury, Johannesburg, recently took to the streets to express their concerns about violence and crime in their areas.
On Tuesday eight people were arrested in Cape Town for public violence while taking part in the "Western Cape Total Shutdown" march.
In a statement, the leaders said they condemned the “lack of government action in cracking down on gangsterism and criminality on the Cape Flats”.
They added that the church’s provincial standing committee (PSC) held an annual meeting on Friday and resolved to back the efforts of the community religious and community leaders to help fight the crisis.
“After hearing that Westbury in Johannesburg was experiencing similar action, the committee added that community's situation to its resolution,” it said.
Two people are expected to appear in court on Monday after they were arrested for public violence following protest action in Westbury, Johannesburg on Friday -in relation to the death of a woman after she got caught in the crossfire of a shooting.
According to the office, the PSC said it acknowledged the struggle and pain experienced by various communities in the country caught in ongoing cycles of poverty and expressed specific support for Westbury, Cape Flats and The Shutdown Movement.
The PSC requested that Archbishop Thabo Makgoba assure the religious and community leaders and structures on the ground of its prayers and support as they continued to give guidance to these communities in seeking to ensure these crises receive urgent and practical attention by the authorities.