South Africa: Public Urged to Help Police in Philippi Murder Case

The Portfolio Committee on Police has urged the public to come forward with information that might lead to the arrest and successful prosecution of the perpetrators of the Philippi murders.

According to reports, 13 people have been killed in Philippi on the Cape Flats since last Friday evening. Six women between the ages of 18 and 26 were shot and killed at a residence in Marcus Garvey last Friday night.

Five men, aged 18 to 39, were fatally shot, while another was injured during two separate shooting incidents on Saturday night.

Portfolio committee chairperson Tina Joemat-Pettersson decried the escalating murder rate in the country. Extending condolences to the families of the victims, she said the Philippi murders are symptomatic of a complex socio-economic problem that requires an urgent and multifaceted approach.

"While the committee is cognisant of the funding challenges facing all government departments, SAPS [South African Police Service] must move with speed to implement SONA [State of the Nation Address] promises made by the President, which will be the first pillar in the war against crime," Joemat-Pettersson said.

She urged the SAPS to increase police visibility on the streets, especially in crime hot spot areas. SAPS, Joemat-Pettersson said, must strengthen strategies intended to fight the proliferation of illegal guns.

Joemat-Pettersson also emphasised the need for robust strategies to curb gender based violence.

"Violence against women remains one of the most repugnant forms of crime in the country and cannot be left unabated.

"We must be aware that this challenge is not purely a policing matter, but one that calls for active participation of all South Africans to fight crime."

She said a culture of cooperation between SAPS and members of the community must be encouraged in order to win the war against crime.

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