Police Minister Bheki Cele has challenged police generals to resign if the crime situation does not improve on the Cape Flats.

At least 13 people were shot and killed over the weekend in the latest spate of violence in the area.

Cele was delivering the budget vote for his Department and the Police Watchdog IPID in Parliament.

“The recurring scenes of scattered dead bodies in the streets of Phillipi, Mitchells Plain and Nyanga are unbearable. It is on that score that I challenge all Generals in the South African Police Service to surrender their uniform if this situation does not improve. The battle ahead of us requires a dedicated and selfless workforce that is equal to the task.”

High murder rates

EFF MP Tseko Mafanya says Cape Town will soon become the most dangerous city in the world if the high murder rates are not addressed.

Mafanya says gangsterism, gender-based violence and politically motivated killings are the three types of crime that are tearing communities apart in South Africa.

“Cape Town is on the way to become the most dangerous city in the world with more murder per capita than city in the middle of the narcotics war of South and Central America. Just this weekend, 11 people were murdered in Phillipi. And in Hanover Park 45 people have been killed here in gang violence. But gangsterism is not just limited to Cape Town. You find it across the country even in rural areas and it only continues to spread.”

Lack of visible policing, shortage of police

DA MP Andrew Whitfield says lack of visible policing and a shortage of police are some of the main challenges facing communities in gang and crime invested areas of the Western Cape.

Whitfield told Police Minister Bheki Cele that inadequate police resources affect other provinces more than others.

“In the Western Cape last year for example Minster, half of the murders were recorded at only 13 percent of police stations. And murder in Phillipi East precinct where we had the horrific incident just last weekend has increased by over 18% over the last five years. Yet over the past two years, the Western Cape provincial policing ratio has deteriorated from one police officer to every 385 people, down to one police officer to every 509 people. And in the last four years, the Western Cape has lost 4 500 police officers.”

State of emergency

Meanwhile the Western Cape Policing Forum Board is calling for the declaration of the state of emergency as a means to curb rampant crime on the Cape Flats.

They say over 2000 people have been murdered this year alone. The group held a picket outside parliament on Thursday afternoon.

Policing Forum Board Chairperson, Fransina Lukas says they earlier met with Cele to ask for more police visibility.