Why put up with riots?

Jade van Rhyn, Marina da Gama

I would like to know why the residents of Muizenberg and Marina Da Gama constantly have to put up with riots from the people of Capricorn and Vrygrond?

Why are the water cannons, which were so quickly used against peaceful female protesters, not brought out at all for these criminals?

Why are they allowed to do this, and yet if a law-abiding citizen decided to deface government property like they do then we would swiftly get arrested?

I am so sick of stressing about not only my vehicle or property being damaged but stressing about my two young children in the back of my car getting hit with a brick as we try to get to school and work.

Honestly I do not understand. Why this is tolerated? And I am sick of it. Please advise what is being done.

* Councillor Aimee Kuhl responds:

SAPS and the public order police under SAPS are the safety agent that deals with civil unrest.

Law Enforcement and Traffic have been the first to respond to stabilise the situation but legally cannot engage with active civil disobedience and fall under the command of SAPS when on site.

I recommend that every citizen who has been impacted by these riots lays a case at SAPS, as they are the government agent responsible for all citizens, and they are failing us.

They need to be held accountable by us as ordinary South Africans and only when there are cases can arrests and prosecution follow.

Colonel André Traut, provincial police spokesman, comments:

The policing of any protest action is the primary mandate of SAPS Public Order Policing division, and the circumstances at each incident will determine what action is required to stabilise the area and restore tranquillity. Our members are trained to deal with situations of this kind, and a decision to apply an operational measure such as the water cannon is not lightly taken.

During the recent protest action in Vrygrond, arrests were affected for public violence, arson and trespassing. Although any person has the right to protest for his or her purpose, we will not turn a blind eye to the destruction of property and lawlessness. The allegation that we are failing the communities of this province is therefore an unsubstantiated remark and nothing but an attempt to discredit SAPS.

It is worthy mentioning that Law Enforcement and traffic officials are allowed to affect arrests for the destruction or damage of property as they are peace officers with powers to arrest.