Western Cape Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz on Friday said the provincial Cabinet had accepted a proposal for the establishment of a inter-ministerial collaboration to assist in the stabilisation of communities most afflicted by gangsterism and criminality.
This follows after the deployment of South African National Defence Force (SANDF) for a period of three months, July to October, to the violence-plagued areas of Cape Town and surrounds.
“The deployment of the SANDF is a massive relief for the people of our province who can now look forward to being safe in their own communities and homes,” Fritz said, adding that his office will be establishing a parallel inter-ministerial collaboration to facilitate intelligence gathering and sharing, and the roll-out of integrated social programmes.
“Following my presentation on how to innovate the Department of Community Safety at bosberaad today (Friday), Cabinet have accepted my proposal to establish an inter-ministerial collaboration to facilitate intelligence gathering and sharing, and subsequently the establishment of social programmes within gang-ravaged communities.
“Such programmes will encourage job creation, increased school programmes, sport and culture programmes, youth development and community programmes. The Western Cape Government will activate each Department’s programmes once stabilisation has been achieved in the majority of gang-afflicted communities. This collaboration will report regularly to both the provincial cabinet and premier,” Fritz said.
Police Minister Bheki Cele announced in parliament on Thursday that the SANDF’s deployment has been approved. While speaking at a media briefing after he tabled his budget vote in parliament, Cele said President Cyril Ramaphosa had approved a request for the deployment after he sat down with Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula.
This was part of “extraordinary” measures to be deployed following a bloody weekend in the Mother City’s townships where at least 13 people were killed in several shootings in Philippi East over the weekend.
In a statement, on Friday, the SANDF confirmed that it had been tasked and authorised to deploy various SANDF elements to render assistance to the South African Police Services (SAPS) in the identified crime-ridden hotspots in the Western Cape.
The SANDF will deploy a battalion with support elements during Operation PROSPER. The SANDF gets requested from time to time to assist the SAPS in crime prevention operations. This is executed in line with one of the government outcomes of making sure the all South Africans are and feel safe, according to the department.