FEBRUARY 09 2017 – “It’s only the beginning”, that is the message the special task team of about 60 Johannesburg Metro Police Department and South Africa Police Service men and women is sending with a crackdown on crime in Rosettenville, South of Johannesburg.
“If we can achieve sending a signal to the criminal elements that have been terrorising our communities the last few years,” says Mashaba in the move that most SA have welcomed but has been met with apprehension by the Zimbabwean community in Joburg, who say even traffic cops are asking for their passports.
According to ZimsInSA.com sources two Zimbabweans were arrested in Joburg’s Bramely, after producing their Zimbabwean drivers licences but didnot have their passports, even though they were legally in the country.
“My friend was driving and when he produced his Zimbabwean drivers’ licence and then asked him for his passport, which he didnot have at the time, and he got arrested,” says a Zimbabwean man.
The raid in Rosettenville on Wednesday (yesterday) night was in response to a move by residents to set several properties believed to be drug dens and brothels set alight last weekend.
Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba convened a special task team to raid areas on a regular basis and he says it will be the first of many.
They are blaming foreign nationals for the surge in criminal activity in the area.
Residents have also accused police of not taking their complaints seriously and often being in cahoots with criminals.
“We marched outside that house we tried to stop it. [Policemen] were called time after time, after time, to find out where are the building plans for that house,” said one resident.
“If we can send a signal to them that us as government has taken the responsibility to protect our residents. It’s a campaign going after any criminality anywhere in our city.
“It’s not only the people of Rosettenville going through this nightmare.”
Police groups raided over 40 houses in search of drugs, illegal occupation and any sign of prostitution.
“We begged the people to stop the building there – nobody listened to us. They turned around this is red zone district…you do not need building plans. Yet I have to get building plans?!” – eNCA additional reporting ZimsInSA.com reporter