Bheki Cele, the Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries said yesterday that South Africans cannot live in fear as a result of criminal acts.
The former national police commissioner was addressing the community of Vosloorus in the East Rand on issues related to crime. Vosloorus is the same township where Orlando Pirates and Bafana Bafana goalkeeper, Senzo Meyiwa. was shot and killed.
“Someone, somewhere must rise and say enough is enough. That’s why it is relevant that young people of Gauteng are standing up and saying enough is enough.”
Cele told the crowd that he hated feeling helpless and hopeless.
“I don’t want to be in a situation of helplessness and hopelessness. Crime in South Africa has increased and we are having our communities under siege. Where the answer is I don’t know,” he said.
Cele added that the anger that many Gauteng residents felt was understandable but it had to be directed and channelled in the proper direction.
“I know they are angry, if you can’t be angry about what is happening, you must check your brain and see if it is not liquid. The people of Gauteng must be angry, but that is not enough. Angry and so what?”
“The call which is the clarion call is on the youth to channel this anger. This anger must be guided and directed to the ear. This is the time to be cool-headed, but decisive. It is time to be kind like doves, but make sure we are decisive and wise as serpents,” he said.
He urged the people to deprive criminals of space and time to thrive.
“There must be no peace for criminals, no matter where they are. We must be organised, resourced and squeeze the space,” Cele said.
Speaking about the Meyiwa shooting, Cele said during that fateful night, someone in the community was supposed to have asked questions.
“You’re not going to tell me that someone will come here, shoot someone we all love and nobody stands up to ask what are you doing. That night, that moment, somebody should have said ‘what are you doing’.”