Crime frustrates Khayelitsha entrepreneur

These are some of the stakeholders who visited Ntinga Khozi Fine Art Centre after it had been broken into.

A delegation of police and political and community leaders visited a Khayelitsha entrepreneur who has run her business from two different parts of the area – and been targeted by burglars in both of them.

Nwabisa Nkonyana, runs Ntinga Khozi Fine art Centre from a converted RDP house in Makhaza, Khayelitsha. Last month criminals broke one of the windows attempting to gain entrance into her centre but fortunately they didn’t get in.

Last year, however, criminals did get in and stole laptops from the centre.

Last Friday, Harare police station officers; ward councillor Danile Mkhatshwa; member of the Standing Committee on Finance, Economic Opportunities and Tourism Nomi Nkondlo; and community leaders visited the centre to hear first-hand about the challenges Ms Nkonyana faced.

Ms Nkonyana said she had previously run her business from Town Two but moved from there due to a spate of robberies. However, she suffered the same fate in Makhaza.

“I’m not going to back down on this. I feel that police have let me down as well because in the previous cases there were no arrests and I never heard anything from them about the case.

“These robberies have left me so damn traumatised. This is my passion and it something that I believe I was called to do and yet criminals are making it extremely difficult to fulfil our purposes.

“It cant be right that we would seek protection from thugs against thugs,” she said.

Ms Nkondlo, said she arranged the visit to engage with the Ms Nkonyana and different stakeholders and to find a way forward.

Ms Nkondlo said many business in the township had the potential to grow and create more employment opportunities but due to high levels of crime many were looking at shutting down their operations.

Harare police station station spokeperson, Captain Siyabulela Vukubi, apologised for how Ms Nkonyana had been treated by the police officers when she first reported the incident.

He elaborated that in many cases police officers were stationed in business precincts such as malls but Ms Nkonyana’s business was situated in a residential area.

Captain Vukubi said he would inform the area’s sector commander that there was a business operating in the area but emphasised that it was not possible to have a police vehicle stationed at every business precinct all the time.

These stakeholders were quite pleased about the discussion they had in terms of increasing safety of Ntinga Khozi Fine Art Centre in Makhaza