Police tell residents to co-exist with gangsters as ex-cop reveals truths about tavern shootings

Police tell residents to co-exist with gangsters as ex-cop reveals truths about tavern shootings

Police tell residents to co-exist with gangsters as ex-cop reveals truths about tavern shootings

When darkness falls, residents of Ntuzuma township in ethekwini hide in their houses in fear of the unknown.

The sound of gunfire reverberating in their streets has become a daily occurrence.

One community member, who spoke on condition of anonymity, takes a deep sigh before telling us of the terror and anxiety experienced by township residents.

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โ€œLast year alone four people were shot and killed sitting inside the tavern. All the shootings were drive-by killings. The drinking place remains open, despite concerns from the residents,โ€ said Shabane.

โ€œThereโ€™s hardly a day which goes by without the terrifying sound of gunshots. Those who know the operations of the criminal gangs say they are into car hijackings, and the reason why they fire random shots is to keep other gangs at bay.

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โ€œThey want to instil fear in the community not to interfere in their business,โ€ he lamented.

Concerned residents said the Ntuzuma police station is under-resourced.

โ€œSome police officers are brave enough to say that we must learn to coexist with the gangsters. One police officer said if we donโ€™t bother criminals they will not bother us,โ€ he said.

Fana Shabane, an ex-cop turned anti-crime activist, said tavern shootings are a common feature bedevilling the township in the south of ethekwini. He mentioned one problematic tavern known to locals as Malambane, saying at least three shootings a year take place there.

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โ€œLast year alone four people were shot and killed sitting inside the tavern. All the shootings were drive-by killings. The drinking place remains open, despite concerns from the residents,โ€ said Shabane.

He attributed the killings to gang turf wars over drugs such as whoonga and cocaine.


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