Cape Town (Western Cape province) continues to experience high crime rates as of Tuesday, August 27, despite the deployment of additional police officers and soldiers into the area. On Tuesday morning, seven people were killed in three separate shootings in the Siqalo, Leiden, and Samora Machel areas of the city. Police officials announced an investigation is ongoing to determine if the incidents are linked. All three areas occurred in areas of Cape Town that experience high levels of gang activity, which account for 42 percent of attempted murders in Western Cape province, according to police statistics. Later on Tuesday, around 40 people marched through the city center to call for an end to the violence and to demand a crime summit involving members of the community and government officials. Similar demonstrations are possible in the near term if the security situation does not improve.
Heightened security measures remain in place in Cape Town as of Tuesday. Additional police officers and 1320 members of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) have been deployed into the city in an attempt to curb the high murder and crime rates. SANDF soldiers are scheduled to end their operations on Monday, September 16. An increase in cordon and search operations, foot and vehicle patrols, and checkpoints are expected in the coming days and weeks.
SANDF personnel were deployed into Cape Town on July 12 to help local police conduct joint security operations. According to government officials, over 1000 people have been arrested since the deployment of SANDF and murder rates have decreased in the month of August.
Individuals in Cape Town are advised to monitor the situation, avoid nonessential travel to the above areas, and obey all instructions issued by the local authorities. On a more general note, individuals throughout the country are advised to adhere to the following recommendations:
• Remain vigilant at all times while in public
• Minimize travel by foot
• Avoid going out after nightfall
• Maintain a low profile and avoid any conspicuous dress
• Whenever possible, travel with a local guide
• Be extremely vigilant at ATMs and when exiting banks
• As criminals are often armed, never offer resistance during an attempted robbery; obey all orders given, avoid eye contact and sudden movements, and do everything in your power to keep the situation as calm as possible
• To avoid becoming an easy target, vary daily routes to reduce the predictability of your movements
• When driving, keep doors locked, windows rolled up, and all valuables out of plain sight; maintain sufficient space between you and the car ahead of you to allow for room to manoeuvre, keeping in mind that you are vulnerable when stuck in traffic
• If you believe you may be being followed, drive to a police station or other public facility, never home
• Park as close to your destination as possible when traveling by car, particularly after dark
• When possible, use a chauffeured car service; never use public transportation
Copyright and Disclaimer