Government is 'winning the war' against gangsterism on the Cape Flats, says Ramaphosa
Government is "winning the war" against gangsterism and drug dealing on the violence-plagued Cape Flats in the Western Cape.
This is according to ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa who told the community of Mitchells Plain during his electoral campaign on Friday that the SAPS' anti-gang unit set up in October last year was making "major success" in tackling gang-related violence on the Cape Flats.
Ramaphosa made the remarks while responding to concerns raised by residents of Mitchells Plain, who pleaded with him to put pressure on the police to root out gang violence and drug dealing in their area.
Ramaphosa said the latest SAPS statics showed that gang-related criminal activities such as murder and drug peddling were significantly declining since he and police minister Bheki Cele launched the anti-gang unit last year.
"Since the establishment of the anti-gang unit, gang violence and gang activity has gone down by 24%. It means that it's working, it means that now we are after the gang leaders, the gang members because, as I said when we launched it, we want to put them behind bars…hulle moet tronk toe gaan…We've got a very active minister of police chasing down all these gangsters," said Ramaphosa.
"Of course the levels of gang and drug-related crime are still unacceptably high but the numbers show that we are starting to win the war with the anti-gang unit members working day and night to make our communities safer."
The predominantly coloured community of Mitchells Plain also told Ramaphosa that they felt the requirement to state their race on government job application forms was being used to marginalise them.
Ramaphosa said such a practice was wrong and government would soon do away with it.
"My brother Marshall talks about this wonderful democracy and says that there's no integration and expresses a deep sense of concern and worry about how coloured people are being relegated to the back and how for instance the forms that are filled in still have a race column.
"Now I am against that I think we're going to work hard to eliminate that because there's no reason that we should retain what used to happen in the past, because in the past they used to say are you bantu and they would say are you Zulu, Xhosa or Venda and whatever.
"Now even now these discriminatory practices in forms where we have to declare what we are, are wrong."