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Kliptown residents take justice into their own hands over gang violence fears

Angry residents of Kliptown said they could not sit back while gangs terrorise their community.

FILE: A man was set alight on the night of 10 June 2019 in mob justice attack by Alexandra residents. He was accused of robbing and raping women. Picture: Edwin Ntshidi/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Residents of Kliptown, Soweto, have told Eyewitness News four people have been killed by gangs in their area since Christmas Day and police are not stepping in to quell the deadly violence.

They claim police have failed them and they’ve been left with no choice but to root out criminals themselves.

Last week, a young man died after being burned by angry members of the public in an act of vigilantism.

He was accused of being part of the DSS Gang, which has been terrorising the public.

Angry residents of Kliptown said they could not sit back while gangs terrorise their community.

Residents said that a fight between rival gangs, over a cellphone, led to two people being killed.

A community leader, who asked to remain anonymous, explained: “A person was assaulted there. They hurt his cousin. They went to stab two people on the same day.”

He said they had established a community to deal with gangs.

“There’s another guy. Some guys went to his house. When he opened the house, they shot him. They took his wife. To this day we don’t know where his wife is.”