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Increased patrols in Manenberg to continue

The Western Cape Education Department says increased police patrols will continue in Manenberg.

FILE: The Western Cape Education Department says increased police patrols will continue in Manenberg. Picture: Renee de Villiers/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Western Cape Education Department says increased police patrols and searches will continue at Manenberg schools despite an overturned court interdict.

The department says a court order forcing it to increase security measures at five Manenberg school affected by gang violence has been rescinded.

The department on Monday challenged the court ruling, but has at the same time committed to following through with ensuring a greater police presence.

The department came under fire for challenging the initial court interdict which compelled it to ensure the safety of learners and teachers at five Manenberg schools severely affected by gang violence.

The department's Bronagh Casey explains why they challenged the ruling.

"This application in court was done to make sure that all the relevant government agencies are included and also to amend impractical aspects on the order. For example, the more unrealistic demands on the Education Department such as ensuring safe passage of people through Manenberg."

Meanwhile, Western Cape Provincial Police Commissioner Arno Lamoer says police will be quicker to respond to flare ups of gang activity in Manenberg now that more officials have been deployed to protect schools in the area.

Police have since promised to roll out a safety plan with immediate effect, paying particular attention to the five worst affected schools.

Lamoer says their two-week plan is an expansion of a strategy they put in place in 2013 when schools in Manenberg were forced to close because of gang violence.

"More police officers will be deployed. We will have more crime intelligence officers operating and collecting some evidence. Our detectives will also focus on what is happening in the area."