Pagad vows to fight on

Pagad leader Abdus Salaam Ebrahim was taken into custody in connection with a triple murder.

People Against Gangsterism and Drugs (Pagad) led a motorcade in Manenberg and Heideveld against gangsterism and drugs. Picture: Graeme Raubenheimer/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Controversial anti-crime organisation, People Against Gangsterism and Drugs (Pagad), believes the arrest of its leader is a case of mistaken identity.

Abdus Salaam Ebrahim was taken into custody from his Lansdowne home early on Wednesday morning just hours after three people were gunned down in Athlone.

The trio, including a woman, were reportedly shot dead in their home.

Police said there were no indications that the victims were involved in any criminal activity.

Pagad's Cassiem Parker said the organisation is being unfairly targeted.

"We think the police are on a fishing expedition. We have the confidence to carry on with our programme. We won't be deterred by the intimidation of the police."

Parker said the organisation will be seeking legal advice.

There has been a spate of suspicious arson attacks in areas including Athlone in recent weeks.

A car dealership in Athlone and a house in nearby Surrey Estate were targeted in July.

The twin blasts occurred at night and no arrests have been made.

The modus operandi in both incidents was similar to the urban terror attacks in Cape Town in the 90s which were associated with Pagad.

The organisation denied any involvement in both cases.

However, it vowed to drive drug dealers and gangs out of the community.

It has recently revived its fight against gangs and drugs in a number of communities.

The organisation said police have failed to protect residents and they have decided to take back communities from criminals.

The group has held several motorcades since the beginning of the fasting month to drive drug merchants out of the greater Athlone area.

But a Veld Road resident says merchants have no alternative but to sell drugs to put food on their tables.

"What else can they do? There are no jobs and if they rob it will be problem, if they steal it will be a problem. Why doesn't the government just provide jobs for them?"