COSATU condemns the police killings that have been racking our communities over the last few weeks. This is a further sign that our society is reaching a crisis in respect of violence and killings. The murders of members of the Police on top of the killings of Community members on a daily basis represent the greatest crisis the society of the W Cape is facing. Nothing decisive is being done to address this scourge tearing apart communities. The roots of this crisis are the general level of criminality and the gang violence and fights over drug turf across all communities. Less measurable than the killings and the body count is the loss of hope of many of the communities, when shootings and killings become a regular occurrence.
To say that the different agencies are not able to address the scourge is an understatement as it is spiralling out of control. Communities are forced to hide in their homes for fear of being caught in the crossfire. The DA in the city of Cape Town and the Provincial Government are not responding to the issue as a crisis, because it does not affect the rich mainly white communities and they seem to be pleased that the working class areas are at war with themselves and unable to focus on the real issues of the W Cape, like the growing inequalities and the maintenance of the generational aantages of white communities. The ANC has also not been able to provide a solution and National Government and SAPS need to be more responsive to the crisis, and, as part of the comprehensive solution the police need more personnel, who are better resourced
COSATU calls for a non-partisan solution that unites all the agencies and the different levels of Government. This solution must ensure that civil society is mobilised to support the programme to confront the scourge tearing apart our communities. At the moment the perpetrators of crime and Gangsters are still in the minority in the communities, and there is a need for urgent action. The steps must be urgently implemented lest communities be overrun by the criminals, where the tipping point is reached, and the hegemony of the Gangster code rules in all working class areas.
COSATU calls on the religious communities to lead the campaign to reclaim the hearts and souls of communities and deliver the areas from this crime scourge. The church leaders must chair the crime Conference that COSATU is convening, to develop comprehensive solutions to the scourge of Crime.
The crime conference should be supported and participated in by all the political leaders of the different levels of Government: The national and provincial heads of Police All the police forums and the various organisations that are involved and interested in supporting the fight against crime.
The reason that COSATU is calling for a non partisan approach that forces everyone to work together and develop a comprehensive programme and real partnership, is because the present steps are not working and things are escalating out of control.
The Conference will be held on the 25 July 2014 in the City Hall in Cape Town starting at 11h00 until 14h00. We will be arranging free trains for the community representatives who are coming to the Conference to ensure the participation of all communities. A comprehensive plan will be developed that will serve as a guide for the actions communities need to take and the support that the Government must provide to combat the problem. We must develop longer term interventions that address the socio economic situation that gives rise to the disintegration of the social fabric of our society as part of the response. The different interventions should run concurrently, so that we stop the short term carnage whilst addressing the long term systemic problems.
We need to act with the urgency of now if we are to save the communities from complete ruin as a result of the long term political neglect of the crisis. We are reaching out to all participants to register at COSATU who will be coordinating the Conference against Crime at 021 448 0046 – contact person is Geraldine.
Source : Congress of South African Trade Unions