The City of Cape Town launches hotline to report extortion

The City of Cape Town has called on members of the public to report possible incidents of extortion on its newly launched hotline. This come after seven people were shot and killed in Gugulethu over suspected gang activity. Mayoral Committee member for Safety and Security JP Smith says callers will remain anonymous if they do not wish to be identified.

Smith says officials are concerned about the recent killings on the Cape Flats.

“We have launched the hotline. We are saying to the members of the public report information, we have the first tip-offs already. So that we can start to build a database and we can share it with SAPS and can hold them accountable. We have all these cases, what’s happened to all this, we are interested in the many people who are scared to talk or not in a condition to talk,” says Smith.

The City of Cape Town has also called for urgent police intervention to deal with suspected extortion syndicates in the Cape Metro following a spate of fatal mass shootings in the province recently.

Smith says, “The City is calling for an urgent intervention from SAPS and the criminal justice system to combat extortion and racketeering. The City is quite frustrated by the slow response to Minister Bheki Cele’s announcement in September to launch a steering committee or a task team to curb the extortion experienced by businesses, while the media focuses on the CBD and surrounds. It has in the meantime became clear that businesses and residents in Khayelitsha and surrounding communities are experiencing even more extortion from gangsters.”

Police are investigating Monday’s fatal shooting.

Police say gunmen stopped at a residence in NY 78 and fired a number of shots, killing three women and four men. Two other people were injured and taken to hospital.

The incident follows a deadly shooting of five people in Joe Slovo near Milnerton about three weeks ago and the killing of six other people in Khayelitsha two months back.

Police are investigating whether the incidents may be linked to extortion syndicates operating on the Cape Flats and are following up on various leads.