West Rand violence shows inability of police to curb crime: Expert

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Public violence monitor at the Institute for Security Studies Godfrey Mulaudzi says the violence being experienced in parts of Gauteng, especially in the West Rand, highlights the inability of the police to curb crime.

He was reacting to protests in Mohlakeng on Gauteng’s West Rand where some locals are burning down shacks believed to belong to foreign nationals who are illegally in the country.

Residents are calling for a total shutdown of illegal mines. The violence has been prompted by the recent gang rape of eight women, allegedly by illegal miners, in nearby Krugersdorp.

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Mulaudzi says when the cries of communities are ignored, lawlessness rears its head. “A point of major concern to me is how police are able to deal with crime issues in communities. As a result, communities feel like they have to embark on vigilantism, to enforce the law without legal authority. You can see now, police see they have no faith in police handling the situation as it has been ongoing for years now, triggered by the recent raid.”

Last week, residents in several parts of the West Rand were protesting against illegal miners. The protests were largely sparked by the rape of young models who were violated in the Krugersdorp area, allegedly by illegal miners known as Zama Zamas.

A raid of abandoned mines by locals started in Soul City, Kagiso, on Thursday, spilling over to Munsieville on Friday.

VIDEO | Protesters burn shacks believed to be for illegal miners in Gauteng’s West Rand: