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S.Africans scoff at ’empty’ government promises after massacres

From a mobile stage set up in a dusty, derelict soccer field overlooking hundreds of tin shacks, South African officials promised justice and more security for a grieving community in Soweto on Monday following a weekend massacre. Fifteen people were shot dead early Sunday when assailants descended on a tavern in the Orlando district of Soweto, wielding powerful guns and shooting seemingly at random. Police Minister Bheki Cele told the local…

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Following a weekend tragedy in Soweto, South African officials vowed justice and increased security from a mobile stage set up in a dusty, abandoned soccer field that overlooked hundreds of tin shacks.

When attackers stormed a bar in Soweto’s Orlando neighborhood early on Sunday morning brandishing large guns and shooting at random, fifteen people were killed.

The killers, who are still at large, will be apprehended, and policing will be stepped up, according to Police Minister Bheki Cele, who brought out five new police vehicles for the neighborhood station to mark the event.

“We must respond. In order to restore stability and hope, we must collaborate with people “After speaking to a group of more than 200 people, some of them were clearly upset and crying, Cele told reporters.

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Locals, however, claimed that they had heard it before and no longer believed it.

Tim Thema, 50, a community leader in the area where the shooting occurred, said “as usual, (they’re) giving us hollow promises that have never been carried through.” He merely wants to gain cheap political advantage.

One of Johannesburg’s largest slums, Soweto, which was once a hub of anti-apartheid action, has recently seen a resurgence, but many portions are still underprivileged.

With an average of 67 murders per day in the first four months of 2022, violent crime has increased throughout the nation at its greatest rate in the previous five years.

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Another large-scale shooting occurred this weekend at a bar.

Four persons were killed and eight others were hurt in the city of Pietermaritzburg in the eastern state of KwaZulu-Natal.

Police, according to Cele, did not think the acts were related.

South Africa is currently experiencing escalating social and economic problems, with a 34.5 percent unemployment rate and approximately 64 percent youth unemployment.

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– Drinking, unemployment, and poverty

Siyabonga Sam, 32, another Orlando resident who lost his job due to the coronavirus outbreak, stated that one of the causes of this was poverty. “This will never end if government doesn’t provide jobs.”

The large density of bars and liquor stores, according to Johannesburg Mayor Mpho Phalatse, is a problem. He said that these establishments frequently outweigh “schools, clinics, churches, and everything else combined.”

According to government health assessments, binge drinking is on the rise and alcohol misuse is a serious problem in the nation.

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According to Phalatse, the government and the liquor board must find a way to get involved.

Taverns aren’t the issue; rather, there aren’t enough social and economic activities to keep these youth employed and give them purpose in life, according to Thema.

Sipho Khwinda, a 49-year-old pastor with four children, said basic infrastructure would go a long way to improve community safety because the region lacks streetlights, parks, and decent housing.

He declared, “There’s no barrier, and there’s no security.”

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