Western Cape Religious Leaders Forum Supports Commission of Inquiry into Crime in Khayelitsha

Address by Imam Dr. A. Rashied Omar at a rally outside Parliament to deliver an Open Letter to President Zuma, Premier Zille, Minister Mthethwa and Mayor de Lille, Thursday 13 December 2012


Imam Dr. A. Rashied Omar addresses the rally outside Parliament

Comrades and Friends, My Sisters and Brothers,

I bring you greetings of peace from the Western Cape Religious Leaders Forum; and its chief patron, Archbishop Thabo Makgoba.

I am here on behalf of the Western Cape Religious Leaders Forum; to show our solidarity with the people of Khayelitsha in the struggle to bring Greater Levels of Safety and Stability to our communities.

I am here to say loudly and clearly that our people have lost their patience with Crime.

I am here to say loudly and clearly that our people have lost their confidence in the criminal justice system.

I am here to say loudly and clearly that our people have no trust in the Police Services (both SAPS and the Metro Police) to keep them safe from crime.

Comrades and Friends, My Sisters and Brothers,

It is ironic that even our Police Services acknowledge that Khayelitsha’s crime statistics are among the worst in the country.

Why then is opposing a Commission of Inquiry to help us find solutions to the scourge of crime?

We are here to say loudly and clearly that OUR campaign for safety and stability in Khayelitsha is not about politics.

Our people are tired of being used as political footballs in the personal agenda’s of politician.

We need legal and humane solutions to the scourge of crime that is threatening to eat up all of our hard earned freedoms and democracy.

Each day the Commission of Inquiry is delayed the safety of OUR people living in Khayelitsha – and millions more in similar communities across South Africa – is jeopardised.

Comrades and Friends,

Unless we can provide our communities with concrete proof that the law enforcement agencies have the will and competence to rid our communities of the scourge of crime, mob justice will remain the popular, and some may argue the only, option.

If there are no legal solutions, our communities will be plunged into, God-forbid, an abyss. We want to find those legal solutions.

And the Commission of Inquiry will help us find those legal solutions.

The Commission of Inquiry will independently assess why levels of safety continue to spiral.

The Commission of Inquiry will look beyond Police to other challenges including the under-developed urban environment and safety in schools.

The Commission of Inquiry will further allow community members, police officers and experts to share their experiences of crime to an independent panel.

The Western Cape Religious Leaders Forum; demands the immediate commencement of the work of the O’ Regan/Pikoli Commission of Inquiry into Crime in Khayelitsha.

We commend the Social Justice Coalition and all other organizations who have long struggled on behalf of the Khayelitsha community to get this Commission of Inquiry.

We pray for the success of your campaigns.

Last but not least, we pray for the repose of the souls of the victims of crime and we extend our deepest sympathy to their parents and families.

 


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