With crime statistics painting a worrying picture about Gugulethu, the Progressive Development Forum held a safety and security indaba to find ways of bringing peace to the area. Various community organisations attended the event on Thursday December 6 to raise their concerns and hopefully establish a strategy.
But sadly, residents were nowhere to be seen as the chairs at the Gugulethu sports complex, were empty.
The Progressive Development Forum was established in 2016 to deal with issues in Gugulethu.
Community stakeholders shared similar sentiments that crime must be everyone’s fight.
They said drug abuse was the main cause of crime in the area.
However, they warned that this would never end if the residents continued to harbour criminals and remain silent.
The forum said the crime statistics indicated that Gugulethu was among the top 10 areas in the country for murder.
This was one of the main reasons why they had created this platform and hoped to come up with a way forward to address crime.
However, they said that they needed to include the voices of different organisations so that they could all work for a common cause. Progressive Development Forum chairperson ,Lee Khabile, said the fact that the area featured among the top 10 communities across the country for murder and had a high rate of crime was alarming.
They could no longer sit back and fold their arms and do nothing.
Mr Khabile highlighted rape, housebreaking, murder and robbery as among the main crimes committed in the area.
He said they wanted to develop ideas and plans that could be implemented to minimise crime.
He said the harsh and sad reality was that people were starting to feel unsafe in Gugulethu and that should not be the case.
With the festive season looming, he feared that crime would escalate. There are also concerns that the current situation could easily drive away potential investors.
Mr Khabile said they must continue to look for ways to combat crime and must implement ideas. He said this was the first time they hosted such an event and hoped that it would be an annual one.
“We are caring residents of Gugulethu.
“We are here to raise a united voice against crime. We want to play a part, an active role in fighting crime. Crime is everyone’s battle. We must be proactive in fighting it.”
Resident Nomalizo Mxono agreed that drug abuse remains a major problem in Gugulethu.
She said drug-lords should be kicked out of the community and police officers needed to build a relationship with the community and be more effective in fighting crime.
Captain Edward Faku from Gugulethu police station said the fight against crime must be fought by everyone and police officers could not do it alone.
Captain Faku said police should not be expected to play the role of the parents and the community but should be able to provide a policing service.
He said police officers are expected to do everything with little or no support from the community.