Cape town Mayor Patricia de Lille says Cape Flats parents have failed their children.
De Lille, along with DA Leader Mmusi Maimane and Deputy Provincial Leader, Bonginkosi Madikizela, was in Manenberg yesterday campaigning for the upcoming local elections.
Before that, the party was in Crossroads where it launched its campaign on a big screen TV.
About 400 DA supporters were in attendance, dancing their way through the township.
The DA says it was the same advert which was rejected by the SABC.
Spokesperson Phumzile van Damme says: “The SABC had informed the DA that it had no available slots for political adverts.”
The group then went for an inter-faith prayer service in Manenberg, which was attended by leaders of various faiths as well as the community.
Parents, who had lost their children to violence in the area, came forward, crying on De Lille’s shoulder.
De Lille said it was parents’ responsibility to raise law-abiding citizens.
She says: “Manenberg never used to be like this and so I have to be honest. We have to admit that we have failed our kids.
“We have to work together to bring about change. The City has many programmes in place and together we can take our communities back.”
Sheikh Shaheed Esau of the Muslim Judicial Council agreed, and urged people to turn back to God.
“Our prayers as community members and as parents are equally important. We need prayer and we need change,” said Esau.
Maimane was moved by the parents’ tales. He said that although skollies and merts may think they have won this round, people should not underestimate the power of prayer.
“Hope is what we will use to get rid of these criminals who take our children. Tell that gangster, ek issie jou broertjie of jou bra nie, jy’s a tsotsi, you must go to jail,” said Maimane to applause.