In last Friday’s Daily Voice, we flipped the script in the “army deployment on the Cape Flats” story.
The South African National Defence Force was being understandably secretive, unwilling to inform the media where and when “Operation Prosper” would strike next.
SAPS were tight-lipped too, after all, it’s a joint operation between cops and soldiers.
All we could hear was Police Minister Bheki Cele and other politicians rekking their bekke about winning the war on gang violence and bringing the murder rate down.
We also heard community observers debating how effective military-trained officers would be at law enforcement and addressing the deeper socio-economic issues.
Everyone gooied in their two cents, but no one managed - or bothered - to get the other side: the gangsters.
Until the Daily Voice called up some of the most notorious dik dinge from the Cape’s most dangerous gangs.
We asked THEM what THEY thought of the deployment, and how this would impact THEIR “operations”.
We interviewed members of the Americans, Mongrels, Junky Funky Kidz, the Vikings, G-Units, Dixie Boys, Sexy Boys and Hard Livings.
While none of them were willing to have their names published, they all claimed they were “businessmen” and the next three months would be business as usual - in the drugs, guns, perlemoen and sex trade.
Ironically, they all agreed that the army would help to curb the violence on the Flats, and they welcomed that.
Some made rather disturbing claims.
They admitted that they rely on cop corruption to operate freely, and police, in turn, rely on the gangs for drugs, dop and cash loans.
They also boasted that they have the support of their communities, who they feed and take care of.
The article was shocking enough, but so was the reaction of readers.
On Facebook, users gunned the Voice, asking why we are “giving the gangsters publicity” and acting as their “mouthpiece”?
One reader accused the Voice of being mafia, and working with the gangsters.
Another asked why we don’t piemp the skollies to police?
People, people, people!
If you want to hear what the gangsters have to say, keep on reading.
If you don’t, stop reading, or read another newspaper.
We are journalists, our job is to keep you informed by giving all sides a “voice”.
And we “skrik vir niks” in that quest, as you know.
We have contacts - some in high places and some in low places.
These voices may be telling you the truth, they may be telling lies.
In the case of gangsters and seasoned criminals, we urge you to take it with a generous pinch of salt.
After all, the devil is a liar, as they say.
Read between the lies. Read to be informed. Read to understand.