Residents of Vryburg in North West have raised concerns about the escalating crime rate since the easing of lockdown regulations. They say the town has become a hotbed of crimes including smash-and-grab robberies.
Most vehicles targeted are those from other provinces like Gauteng, Northern Cape and Free State. Residents say robberies in Vryburg have become commonplace and shoppers are the targets.
“These thugs grab people’s bags, they open the vehicle doors themselves and phones and their hiding place is at the rank where they change clothes and appear innocent so these patrols should also be at the taxi rank.”
“These robberies are unacceptable, I mean after you have worked hard for what you have and then you get robbed just like that, that’s bad and traumatizing.”
“Most of the cars from other provinces passing through Vyrburg are the most targeted.”
The local community policing forum says robberies have become a common sight in the area. Gomolemo Lulukile from the forum says, “The crime in Vryburg this time is too much and it has migrated from our township and comes right in town. We have however taken it upon ourselves to protect our people Against crime as we experience such crime on daily basis.”
Meanwhile, police in the province have cautioned motorists, shoppers and businesses alike to be more alert. Police spokesperson, Adel Myburg says, “I can confirm that in Vryburg police are now having currently a challenge at hotspots areas which is at the Vryburg CBD where young boys about the age of 18 mostly working in pairs of two. If a person stops at the robot, they would approach him and try and get the attention of the driver and at the next moment, they try and see if the vehicle’s doors are locked or not. If the door is not locked they open the door and grab whatever they can find in the vehicle and run off.”
The community neighbourhood watch is determined to keep the town safe despite the dangers.