Thirteen weeks have passed since soldiers arrived in the gang-ridden crime hotspots of the Cape Flats – and, after the operation was initially criticised for being ineffective, the number of murders in the area has now steadily dropped.
This is no cause for celebration, however, as the number sits at around 30 murders a week across the province.
In the past two weeks alone, 889 arrests have been made for an array of crimes including murder, attempted murder, assault and robbery. Of that figure, 337 of those arrested were wanted suspects.
“The situation has been stabilising and murders are now averaging in the 30s per week, provincially,” said police spokesperson Novela Potelwa.
“That is testament to the hard work of the integrated forces as well as station, cluster/district and provincial deployments. Figures aside, the absence of serious violent crime incidents, particularly on weekends when crime often peaks, is on its own an indication that the impact of the operational intervention is beginning to yield results.”