Mark Wiley MPP
DA Western Cape spokesperson for Community Safety in the Western Cape Provincial Parliament
General Veary, SAPS commander for the Nyanga area, certainly told the truth in a reported interview today (3 October 2012) .General Veary said the SAPS will not hesitate to use their firearms when confronted by gangsters who pull out guns.
Self-defence is an acknowledged and defendable reason for drastic action and gangsters have shown repeatedly that they have little regard for human life. The police have both the right, and the power, to use deadly force.
It is, however, the other half of the interview that was shocking and has long term implications for the broader community. For the first time a high ranking official has acknowledged that the Presidential amnesty for prisoners was nothing more than a cynical exercise, even one to terrorise unsuspecting communities .
Of the 122 prisoners released into the Hanover Park area since April 2012, 11 are murderers, 6 attempt murderers and 12 were sentenced for rape. Others have convictions for serious crimes of violence. Almost all are known gang members. These facts need to be weighed up against the President’s remarks in his Freedom day speech where he announced the amnesty. President Zuma stated no prisoner, parolee or probationer who was guilty of ” aggressive, sexual, firearm or drug offences” would be released. Furthermore ” people who are declared dangerous criminals” would also not be released.
The DA in the Western Cape would like to know, how is it then possible that this ‘crime’ has been committed and who is going to be held accountable?