It’s been a bloody week on the Cape Flats. Another man was ruthlessly gunned down in Bonteheuwel on Monday [June 8], bringing to total seven people killed in just one week.
The latest victim was a 23-year-old man who was shot and killed in Smalblaar Street on Monday evening. Another man was reportedly shot dead in Karee Street on the same day, many believe the shooting was a case of mistaken identity.
Gang violence in Bonteheuwel has surged in recent weeks. Ward councilor Angus Mckenzie says, the release of inmates due to overcrowding in jails could be the cause.
“Nineteen thousand prisoners were released from prison over the last few weeks, of those 19 000, 6 000 of those prisoners were released back into the Cape Flats,” says Mckenzie.
Last week, a father and his two year-old son were killed when a vehicle drove beside them, while he was cradling his son, and opened fire. The father collapsed into a nearby yard where his body was recovered, with his son’s.
In another incident, a man was killed when a vehicle drove past a soccer field, where an illegal match was taking place, and opened fire. Law enforcement officers have since had to enforce lockdown more harshly in the area to curb the killings.
According to Mckenzie, innocent members of the community are the ones who usually fall victim to these attacks. Police presence is needed to control the surge of violence. Mckenzie says they are not visible enough in the area due to being roped into policing COVID-19 hotspots.
Casings taken from crime scenes have also shown that new ammunition is being used by gang members. Just a few months ago the area was stable and peaceful, but now it has returned to a state of chaos and violence.
Bonteheuwel gangs are battling for turf and innocent residents are losing their lives as the war continues to rage.