The Western Cape Government will be driving safety interventions to reduce gang-related harm, Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz said yesterday.
Fritz said he was appalled after a teenager from Hanover Park was struck by a stray bullet in the spine while playing in a football tournament in Philippi on Monday, an eight-year-old boy was hospitalised after being shot in the head on Saturday afternoon while playing in Manenberg, and a four-year-old girl lost an eye in a shooting in Hanover Park on 25 March.
He said it is “unacceptable that people on the Cape Flats are constantly subjected to such terrorism where simply playing outside can result in serious injury or even death”.
“We are hard at work implementing numerous initiatives aimed at putting an end to this, and to restore calm to our communities,” Fritz said.
His department’s efforts include working closely with Law Enforcement Advancement Plan (LEAP) personnel, the police and all other enforcement agencies to ensure the deployment of technical teams in the six communities with the highest rates of murder and violence. Over time, this will be extended to 16 areas, he said.
Fritz said his department has also made amendments to the Western Cape Liquor Act which focus on reducing alcohol-related harm and the violence and abuse that accompanies it.
He said his department is also setting up area-based teams which combine violence prevention, law enforcement and urban design and social cohesion as part of integrated interventions to stop the violence.