Open letter to South Africa’s students‚ universities and government‚ represented by Minister in the .
I READ with dismay the article by Andile Mngxitama that insinuates the ANC and the government are responsible for the criminal attacks on residents of Kennedy Road informal settlement.
It's my belief that Mngxitama is abusing the platform given to him by Sowetan for God knows what purpose. He decided to be one-sided when writing his article. First, he is alleging that the provincial government and police appear to be in cahoots with ANC militia. I have been following this issue with great interest. Tribalism and vigilantism have no place in South African society.
I wish to bring a few facts to the public's attention . This information was made available by department of transport and community liaison MEC Willies Mchunu, also deputy chairperson of the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal.
Mchunu visited the area and informed a provincial task team comprising the deputy provincial commissioner, the head of community safety and liaison and Ethekwini municipality. The team arranged a stakeholder meeting to hear from community structures regarding their understanding of what led to the attacks.
Among the findings that were made by the task team were that the majority of the community structures and ordinary residents had lost confidence in the ability of the Sydenham police to deal decisively with crime in the area.
There is no CPF sub-forum that works with the police in terms of crime-prevention initiatives and a curfew has been imposed on residents. It has forced residents not to cook, watch TV, or walk around after seven at night.
Some resolutions that were taken during the stakeholders' meeting were that the SAPS provincial commissioner's office will set up a special police task team to hunt down the criminals involved in the weekend attacks.
This team will exclude officers from the Sydenham police station. The curfew, allegedly imposed on the residents by "the forum", was found to be illegal, inconsistent with the values of a democratic society. It was lifted immediately. It was agreed to place the settlement under 24-hour policing by teams from the provincial public order policing unit and Durban metro police.
Mchunu has also invited people with credible information regarding allegations that the attacks were ordered ,or at very least, occurred with the tacit approval of the ANC, so that they can be investigated. This should be done for the benefit of the residents of Kennedy Road.
I am also concerned that Sbu Zikode was unable to attend the meetings. I acknowledge that you said he is in hiding. The MEC has shown his willingness to meet Zikode.
Please note that most of the information is available at www.kzntransport.gov.za.
Mbizeni Musa Mdlalose Pietermarizburg