File photo – Police on duty in Eldorado Park.
- Residents camp outside the police station because of the high crime rate in Eldorado Park.
- The district councilor says 19 shootings and seven deaths have been reported in the area.
- The mayor of Joburg assured the residents of Eldorado Park that their concerns were allayed.
Residents of Eldorado Park are outraged by the high crime rate in the area.
“Eldorado Park is in a state of disaster, with a high crime rate,” said local ward councilor, Dwain Ponsonby.
Ponsonby has been at the forefront, with residents camping outside the police station and calling for urgent action.
Residents have been camping outside the police station since last Monday.
According to Ponsonby, at least 19 shooting incidents had been reported, as well as seven homicides.
“Crime is out of control and people are living lawlessly. Law enforcement in the area is dead. They are in the area, but they are not being deployed accordingly to make arrests. Obviously the police are a problem.
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“Joint operations are not active in the area, so the police are coming in without knowing what to do. The police should be dealing with this with an integrated approach,” Ponsonby said.
“We also need the National Prosecutor because these guys… [criminals] are arrested and the next day they are free. We also need home affairs and social development because if we don’t approach this holistically, we will not win this war.”
Joburg Mayor Mpho Phalatse assured Eldorado Park residents that their concerns were allayed.
Phalatse said that when she was made aware of the increase in shootings and criminal activity, public safety MMC David Tembe was deployed to liaise with the community.
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She said a decision had been made to send additional resources from the Joburg Metro Police Department (JMPD), including officers and specialized units.
Phalatse said officials from her office met with community leaders on Wednesday.
In addition, the offices of the Acting City Manager and the Chief Operations Officer have been tasked with urgently assisting in formulating a response to issues that fall within the City’s mandate.
“We assure the community that work is being done. My intention is to arrange a community meeting to outline how we can work together to improve what is being done and to repair and rebuild Eldorado Park .
“There are many other matters that fall outside the municipality. The call for an integrated approach has indeed not gone unheard.
“I have written letters to the Prime Minister and the respective offices of the President, requesting their assistance in addressing the myriad problems plaguing Eldorado Park and other communities,” she said.