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WC community leaders want draft plans on organised crime rolled out immediately

Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz has written to Police Minister Bheki Cele requesting that the planned transversal steering committee focusing on organised crime and extortion in the Cape Town City Centre, as well as township communities, start operating.

FILE: Police Minister Bheki Cele releases the first quarter crime statistics for 2020/2021 at a media briefing on 14 August 2020. Picture: GCIS

CAPE TOWN - Western Cape community safety leaders want drafted plans dealing with organised crime to be rolled out immediately.

Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz has written to Police Minister Bheki Cele requesting that the planned transversal steering committee focusing on organised crime and extortion in the Cape Town City Centre, as well as township communities, start operating.

Since a meeting they had in September, there have been alleged extortion-related crimes, which included the fatal shooting of eight people in Gugulethu last week.

MEC Fritz said that the committee would rope in expertise from the police, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and others to eradicate gang and extortion-related crime plaguing Cape Town communities.

Reports have surfaced of gangs dubbed "Boko Haram" and the "Guptas" holding residents in Gugulethu, Nyanga, Khayelitsha and other areas to ransom, forcing them to pay protection money.

Hosting a community safety imbizo in Langa this weekend, Minister Bheki Cele vowed that a plan was in place to thwart these crimes.

"There should be no separation of this extortion, that there is a city one and a township one. As I speak to you, that plan is here, so instead of people shouting and calling on us to sit down and find out how far we have progressed, this is the plan we'll be using in the Western Cape," the minister said.

Provincial leaders are meeting on Monday morning to further address the violent scourge.

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