Zandspruit residents tell police they fear for their safety

Rineilwe Mohlabi and Ashley Luruli receive pamphlets from Stewart Birrell of Honeydew CPF.

Patricia Mogabuti works and stays in Zandspruit and she is frightened by the level of crime in the area.

“I fear for my life. There are so many guns here. Every night people fire shots and they knock on our doors when we are asleep,” she explained, referring to criminals who allegedly rob the residents at night.

This street vendor said her brother finishes work at 9pm every evening and arrives at the settlement just before 11pm. “Every day we pray that he arrives home safely. He can’t leave his job, how will he survive,” she asked.

Members of the Honeydew Police and Community Policing Forum visited the informal settlement on 3 March to hand out pamphlets and whistles to residents.

The settlement was declared a hotspot for contact crime. Police spokesperson Warrant Officer Karen Jacobs explained that contact crimes such as assaults, domestic violence and murder were common in the area.

“We are handing out pamphlets to educate community members. This will help people to know their rights and responsibilities. It will help them to be more aware of the crime incidents in this area,” she said.

She continued that elders and children who cannot defend themselves when confronted by criminals, should blow their whistles to alert other residents.

Jon Rosenberg from the CPF said the awareness was part of the recovery plan. “We have established all the hotspots in the Honeydew police precinct and we will create awareness in all the areas,” he said.

He explained that every area within the Honeydew precinct had its own unique problems.

One of the community leaders, Jeanette Masinya explained that residents did not trust each other and were not willing to work together. “People have illegally connected electricity. There are guns here and whenever any individual decides to give the police information, the criminals threaten to kill that person,” she said.

Details: Honeydew Police, 011 801 8604.

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