Residents of Westbury protest outside the Sophiatown police station. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)
The DA in the Cape Metro says it hopes Police Minister Bheki Cele would take similar steps for Cape Town after he deployed a specialised unit, the Tactical Response Team, to tackle the scourge of gangs and drugs in Westbury, Johannesburg.

Westbury has been at the centre of violent protests since the death of a mother who was shot in a gang-related shooting last Thursday.

“As the DA Cape Metro Region, we are happy for the Westbury community for this rollout of additional SAPS resources, as it will assist to tackle crime in your community,” said Grant Twigg, the DA Cape Metro Chairperson.

“It is, however, concerning to note the Minister does not see the need to do the same in Cape Town, this knowing that our areas are 10 times worst.”

According to the Twigg, Cape Town has a police officer to person ratio of 1:560, close to double the national average.

“Cape Town is home to 10 of the 30 worst murder police precincts in South Africa. What does Minister Cele not understand? Does Cape Town lives not matter to him?” he asked.

The DA Cape Metro reiterated its call to the Minister to increase the visible policing, institute specialised units to specifically combat gangsterism and drugs, and to formally advise the President to deploy the army to “stabilise our war zone communities with immediate effect”.

“Minister Cele, this is not about politics or elections. It’s about people’s lives. This is about mother’s losing sons, fathers losing daughters and children becoming orphans,” added Twigg.

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