The Beacon Valley sub-forum of the Mitchell’s Plain Community Police Forum (CPF) had to postpone its election for a new chairperson as only two of the five delegates from the different organisations registered were present at the meeting on Thursday June 28, which resulted in no elections taking place.
Abie Isaacs, the chairperson of the Mitchell’s Plain CPF, said: “It is important that we fill this vacancy, especially this area that we have our eye on. It was advertised so everybody was made aware of the elections taking place. It is mandatory that the delegates represent their institutions as well as an alternative representative that should be present. This procedure will have to stand over for 21 days and will take place on Thursday July 19. All registered delegates need to be present.”
Lynn Phillips, the secretary of Mitchell’s Plain CPF, said: “People from their respective organisations need to group together to nominate one person. It can be from a sports organisation, religious organisation, business organisation or school governing bodies in the community. The candidates also need to be involved at every meeting and event held by the CPF or an organisation that need the CPF to be present.”
Mr Isaacs said nominated members would be screened and interviewed.
“We need to start tightening the process. They should not have a criminal record.”
Mr Isaacs said the community was facing a crisis with children being murdered and raped.
“We need to take action in catching these suspects and work together as a community to catch them and stop the killings of our children.”
Tina McDonald, a member of the street committee, said: “We are angry, something needs to be done about what is going on in our community. It can’t go on like this.”
Solomon Philander, ward councillor for Ward 79, which includes parts of Beacon Valley and Eastridge, said there were good partnerships in the Mitchell’s Plain community, which should be built on.
Ms Phillips said the community needed to be watchful and aware and attend court hearings of those accused of serious crimes such as rape and murder.
“If members of the community don’t show up at the trials of the accused, they could walk free. We must raise our objections and submissions. We also need to get think tanks to look at policies that affect us as a community, there are people who have brilliant ways of thinking and are able to work and help us in this field. Back in the day, in Mitchell’s Plain, we used to march to the merchants’ houses to close them down. We need to do something here because it is some of our very own who buy these drugs. People said the man arrested for Stacey’s (Adams) murder was a rapist and a murderer, if they knew this, why did they not come forward and do something?”
The body of Stacey Adams, 6, from Eastridge was found buried in a shallow grave in De La Rey Street, Eastridge, after she was reported missing on Sunday June 24 (“Crime scene destroyed”, Plainsman, June 27). Christopher Brown, 25, has been charged with her rape and murder.
He has been remanded in police custody until he makes a formal bail application on Tuesday July 24.
Mr Isaacs said the CPF would be having a strategic process with sectors and sub-forums.
“We need to begin to chart core issues in our community,” he said.
Dean Ramjoomia, a pastor in Mitchell’s Plain, said the community needed to be encouraged and empowered. “We need to assist safety structures by getting involved in stopping crime in the area.”
A resident, who did not want to be named, said the community did not know who their street committees were. He said fighting and preventing crime started at home. “I found a child as young as five, at the shop buying cigarettes for the mother at 7am. Don’t neglect your children, look after them.”
Beacon Valley sector commander, Captain Trevor Katzen, said one of the area’s biggest problems was drugs.
“Beacon Valley is one of the areas where drugs are most prominent. It is not nice standing in court seeing the families of victims who have been raped and murdered. Children as young as 10 years old are dying. Most of the time it is someone that they trust. They (perpetrators) don’t care who your children are anymore. Look after your children and take care of them. Lets us look after our children together.”
Elections for a Beacon Valley sub-forum chairperson elections will take place on Thursday July 19 at Shekinah Full Gospel Church in Beacon Valley at 7pm. You can contact the secretary, Thomas Porthen, at 021 376 1281 or 082 777 7607 for more information.