The Executive Mayor of the Swartland Municipality, Harold Cleophas says he has learnt with great shock and sadness of the incidents of violence in Malmesbury last night.
He has received information from South African Police Service that the attack and suspected murder of one young person had led to extreme tensions and violence within the Wesbank and Ilingelethu communities.
This lead to retaliatory violence and suspected arson.
A suspect, who was apprehended for the murder of a 17-year-old boy, is expected to appear in court today. Those responsible for the deaths of two other civilians are yet to be arrested.
Cleophas says several structures have been damaged by fire and additional loss of life has been reported but they are awaiting final confirmation from the South African Police Service.
He added, “Our sincere condolences go out to the families of all those who have been affected. The Municipality will give humanitarian aid to the affected families whose homes were damaged in fires.”
Outbreak of violence
Cleophas has, on behalf of the Swartland Council and Municipality, condemned the outbreak of violence. The mayor says nothing can ever justify the taking of a person’s life.
We understand the extreme anger acts of senseless violence inspires but retaliating and taking the law into one’s own hands cannot be allowed. It endangers the lives of innocent bystanders and threatens the peaceful existence of all,” he added.
Please stay calm
Cleopas has called on the residents of Wesbank and Ilingelethu to stay calm and allow the South African Police Service and other law enforcement and emergency services to do their job without threat or fear. He added that this is a criminal matter, which must be thoroughly investigated by SAPS and the perpetrators must be brought to justice.
READ MORE: K9 Units in Malmesbury
He says as a Municipality and as Council they will assist the community by facilitating talks and cooperation between community leaders to prevent any further violence and to bring the perpetrators to justice.
People with information are asked to report it directly to SAPS.
Several homes have been torched and injuries reported in Lingelethu, Malmesbury, Western Cape. It is understood to have been sparked by the death of a teenager. WATCH pic.twitter.com/BFojb0H5yZ
— Yusuf Abramjee (@Abramjee) October 9, 2023