Zuma ‘insults’ W Cape
Philani Nombembe | 2017-02-09 06:24:22.0
SONA SELFIE: A bystander takes a selfie during the South African Defence Force dress rehearsal in the Cape Town CBD ahead of the State of the Nation Address
Image by: ESA ALEXANDER
Western Cape community safety MEC Dan Plato has joined those attacking President Jacob Zuma for the deployment of more than 400 soldiers to secure parliament during his State of the Nation speech today.
The Presidency announced this week that Zuma had authorised the drafting of 441 soldiers to maintain “law and order”.
Plato described the deployment as “an insult to communities in the Western Cape living in fear daily “.
The province has called on Zuma to deploy the army to the gang-infested areas of the Cape Flats several times in recent years.
“The scourge of gangs, drugs and guns in our communities leaves too many people fearing for their life and too many innocent lives lost in the crossfire,” Plato said.
“Calls by the Western Cape in the past for military assistance to maintain law and order have been met with heavy criticism from the national government.
“We believe the additional support would allow the police to continue their investigative work to rid our streets of gangsters, drug lords and gun runners.
“President Jacob Zuma’s deployment of the military to parliament to protect him during [his State of the Nation speech] clearly shows that the pleas of the people of the Western Cape are not deserving of the president’s attention, or the national government’s action.”
Plato said Zuma promised last year that two specialist units would be established to deal with illegal firearms and drugs. But, Plato said, that was “nothing more than lip service”.
“It is now one year later and we are still no closer to providing the law enforcement resources needed to address the problems our communities face,” said Plato.
“The Western Cape supports the crime-fighting efforts of the provincial police under the management of Lieutenant-General [Khombinkosi] Jula.
“I call on the national security cluster and Zuma to capacitate the police in the province with resources and the manpower needed to protect those in the crossfire.”