Record 47 murders over the weekend in S. Africa's Cape Town since army deployment

Source: Xinhua| 2019-08-12 22:24:45|Editor: Shi Yinglun
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CAPE TOWN, Aug. 12 (Xinhua) --- South Africa's Cape Town recorded the highest number of murders over the weekend since the deployment of troops in gang-infested areas last month, authorities said on Monday.

A total of 47 murders were recorded, with 27 shootings, 13 stabbings and seven murders by other means, Western Cape Premier Alan Winde said, citing forensic statistics.

This was six more murders than the previous weekend, when 41 murders were recorded.

On July 18, the South African National Defense Force (SANDF) began deploying troops in parts of the city where gangs had spiralled out of control. The deployment will last three months and can be extended depending on the situation.

The troops helped police conduct patrols, anti-gang swoops and search operations. The deployment initially saw a decline in the number of murders, but soon the murder rate rose again.

This prompted Winde to caution that the SANDF cannot be expected to solve gang violence.

What the province really needs, he said, is a fully resourced and functioning police service with an effective and committed management.

Winde has repeatedly called on Police Minister Bheki Cele to ensure proper allocation of police resources in the Western Cape, particularly in its capital, Cape Town.

Confronted by rising crimes, the Western Cape province's police force is dramatically under-resourced compared to other provinces run by the ruling African National Congress (ANC), according to Winde.

The Western Cape, the only province run by an opposition party, has requested more police officers but to no avail.

While one officer must protect 375 people on average nationally, in the Western Cape, the ratio is 1:509.

The opposition Democratic Alliance, which administers the Western Cape, accuses the ANC of turning a blind eye to rising crimes in the province in a bid to weaken the DA's control.