A-26-year old suspect was arrested in Paarl on Wednesday afternoon in connection with the shooting of six Anti-Gang Unit (AGU) members in Samora Machel on Wednesday morning, Western Cape police said.
The members were shot and injured as they were tracing suspects in Samora Machel. They were on a tracing operation in Sweet Home Farm informal settlement and had just apprehended one suspect allegedly linked to recent murders in the area.
"As the members were searching for another suspect also sought for a serious crime in the area, shots came from one of the shacks," police spokesperson, Brigadier Novela Potelwa said.
Two members suffered serious injuries and four others were also wounded. All six officers were admitted to hospital.
Provincial Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz condemned the attack.
“It is with great concern that I received news this morning that six members of our Anti-Gang Unit were attacked and injured in the early hours of this morning while on duty in Samora Machel. I wish to extend my sincere gratitude to our Anti-Gang, all other SAPS units as well as our municipal police who serve with total commitment and bravery under the most trying conditions,” Fritz said.
“At the same time, I condemn in the strongest possible terms this attack by nameless individuals who are intent on trying to create conditions where their criminality and murderous activities become the norm,” he added.
Police said the area was difficult to access with a terrain that is poorly lit and shacks erected close to each other. The area was also a hide-out for dangerous criminals. Recently a spate of murders took place in the area. Police have launched a manhunt for the suspects.
On Tuesday in a statement, Western Cape Premier, Alan Winde accused the national government of ignoring the increasing murder numbers in the province, a statement that was criticised by Police Minister Bheki Cele’s spokesperson, Reneilwe Serero.
Serero said the province was the most resourced province in terms of manpower.
She said that the minister had been putting his focus on the Western Cape and was always attending to policing issues in the province, and further added that the minister recently launched operation Thunder in the province and further launched the Anti-Gang Unit to fight gangsterism in the province.
African News Agency (ANA)