After four attempts at electing a Mitchell’s Plain Community Police Forum (CPF) sub-forum for Westridge, a new one was finally elected at the Dagbreek hall on Tuesday October 16.
Ashley Potts, deputy chairperson of the Mitchell’s Plain CPF said: “A ward cannot function without a sub-forum, we need people to co-ordinate that. This election was important. We not only need to fight crime but prevent crime too and this sub-forum will make sure this happens.”
The CPF said lots of activities were taking place and they needed the sub-forum to facilitate communication between the community and leaders involved.
“We need to make a difference in the community”, said Lynn Phillips, the secretary of Mitchell’s Plain
Nominees came from both Duneside and Merino Block Watch as well as leaders in community churches. The nominees could not have dual capacity in the block watch and sub-forum leadership positions once they were selected and needed to step down.
The five leaders selected were Bonita Wood (chairperson), Lesley Sawyer (deputy chairperson), Reneé Lottering (secretary), Joshua Claassen (deputy secretary) and Bradwin Sitzer (projects co-ordinator).
Eddie Andrews, mayoral committee member for area south and Ward 78 councillor, said: “We appreciate the eagerness. We hope that we have structures like this across Westridge. We pledge council behind you even if we do start small. We can grow.”
Westridge SAPS sector commander, Sergeant Morne Kleinhans, said the people had selected this team and they needed to support them.
“This has been dormant for a long time, let’s proclaim and pledge our support to the structure so that we have their backs.”
Mr Potts encouraged them to continue working together as a team.
“They will experience extreme highs and lows but they should constantly communicate and be in accord with one another”, he said.
Newly-elected chairperson, Ms Wood said: “I knew in my capacity that I would be able to stand for chairperson. I need the guidance from my leaders for this journey my team and I have chosen. My heart is community, my heart is people. We will work hard and the team is ready.”