Murder statistics for the Cape Town metro region have shown a decline from previous weekends, as the South African National Defense Force (SANDF) troops arrived on the ground in various communities, said Western Cape government officials on Monday.
A total of 25 murders were recorded over the weekend by the province’s forensic pathology services unit, compared with 43 last weekend, and 55 in the weekend prior.
Of the 25 people murdered, 18 were shot, four were stabbed and three were killed through other causes. Three people were shot in Mitchell’s Plain at the weekend, and two deaths were recorded in Khayelitsha.
Army deployments as part of police operations were made in communities including Hanover Park and Manenberg over the weekend, with residents in some areas reporting that the weekend had been mostly peaceful.
The army arrived in Cape Town on July 18, a week after Police Minister Bheki Cele announced troops would be deployed to gang-plagued areas on the Cape Flats to assist the South African Police Service.
Western Cape Premier Alan Winde said: “This is still 25 murders too many, but we are pleased to see that the presence of the army is having some impact in our communities, who are tired of crime and living in fear.
“We appeal to the police to continue to make maximum use of this period of relative stability to catch the culprits who are driving crime and disorder in our communities.”
He said the Western Cape government would be working on a long-term plan to address the root causes of crime, to stimulate more economic opportunities, and to ramp up services to high crime communities.
Provincial community safety member of the executive council Albert Fritz said: “While I note that there has been a decrease in the alleged murder admissions processed by the Salt River Mortuary since both the announcement and deployment of the SANDF, the murder of one remains a murder too many. Yesterday (Sunday), a Constable, who was just 32-years-old, was shot and killed. Two of his colleagues were injured during a subsequent shooting in Delft.
“I commend the police for the rapid arrest of the suspect and for having intensified SAPS presence in the area following the shooting. Violence and criminality have no place in our society and must be condemned in the strongest terms. I call on all residents to aid the police by reporting dangerous criminals and illegal firearms.”
– African News Agency