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Water and Sanitation staff suffer 22 hijackings and 52 robberies<span><p>The City's Water and Sanitation Directorate's dedicated workers strive to provide a clean, reliable water supply and effective sanitation, which are essential for public health. Their safety is paramount while delivering these vital services, especially in areas prone to social unrest and criminal activities.</p><p>Threats to staff safety endanger employees and disrupt service delivery to our residents, potentially affecting community health and well-being, as well as causing emotional trauma to staff. Staff are unable to access certain areas due to safety concerns, leading to delays in maintenance and repairs, and compromising the quality of the service.<br></p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img src="https://resource.capetown.gov.za/cityassets/Media%20Images%202/Janitorial%20services%20in%20Blikkiesdorp.jpg" class="responsive" alt="" style="width:2137px;" /> </figure></span><span><p>Since July 1, 2023, the teams have faced:</p><ul><li><strong>22 hijackings</strong> – seven in Khayelitsha, six in Philippi, and three in Mfuleni.</li><li><strong>52 robberies</strong><strong> </strong>- 16 have been at gunpoint. Six robberies have happened in Khayelitsha, three each in Blue Downs and Philippi, and two each in Strand, Gugulethu, Fisantekraal, Athlone, and Bishop Lavis. Stolen items include cellphones, watches, 12 meter reading devices, 14 tablets, and PPE essential for field operations.<br><br> <br><br>Despite the Directorate's commitment to maintaining services, the safety of personnel cannot be compromised. Entering these areas without adequate protection and support exposes staff to risks. This situation has led to the City spending over R8,5 million on private security escorts in the 2023/24 financial year alone.<br><br></li></ul><figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"><img src="https://resource.capetown.gov.za/cityassets/Media%20Images%202/Staff%20also%20have%20to%20go%20into%20structures%20which%20are%20errected%20on%20top%20of%20sewer%20lines.jpg" class="responsive" alt="" style="width:1898px;" /> </figure>​​</span><span><p>In April, two security contractor personnel escorting City of Cape Town staff in Philippi's Phola Park community were shot and killed. On Friday, 17 May, one of two private security escorts, who were guarding a sewer pump station In Athlone while an electrical contractor was working at the facility, was also shot dead in the area. Details around the incident are being investigated by SAPS. </p><p> </p><p>'Residents are assured every effort is made to prioritise the safety of our staff, service delivery and the wellbeing of our residents who are massively inconvenienced and affected by this criminal and opportunistic behaviour, We are working closely with local law enforcement and private security to ensure safe passage for our teams. However, securing their support depends on their availability so it can temporarily delay our operations and it means at times that we are not able to respond as soon as we want. </p><p> </p><p>'These safety measures are necessary to protect our staff. We assure residents we will attend to their service requests as soon as we can do so, with the necessary safety personnel. We regret any inconvenience caused when such incidents do occur. <br></p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img src="https://resource.capetown.gov.za/cityassets/Media%20Images%202/Staff%20often%20work%20late%20at%20night%20in%20dangerous%20conditions.jpg" class="responsive" alt="" style="width:976px;" /> </figure>​​</span><p>'Collaboration with the community is vital. We urge residents, businesses, and community leaders to help support our efforts to ensure safe working conditions for our teams. Let's work together to improve safety in high-risk areas and minimise service disruptions,' said Councilor Zahid Badroodien, the City's Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Sanitation.</p><p><strong>Anonymously report extortion</strong></p><p>Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis launched a city-wide Anti-Extortion Campaign under the slogan <strong>Enough is Enough! Genoeg is Genoeg! Kwanele! </strong></p><p> </p><p>As part of the campaign, the City has set up a 24-hour hotline and rewards system as a call-to-action for residents to help the City tackle extortion.</p><ul><li>Phone 24/7: 0800 00 6992<br></li><li>Email: <a href="mailto:SSIMS.SSIUReporting@capetown.gov.za" target="_blank">SSIMS.SSIUReporting@capetown.gov.za</a><br></li></ul><p><strong>End</strong><br></p>2024-05-19T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#dcbc18e5-db43-43d5-88de-01e967ffe8f5;L0|#0dcbc18e5-db43-43d5-88de-01e967ffe8f5|cleaning;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#4503b6b7-2995-4930-b0ee-8a6ea65687ed;L0|#04503b6b7-2995-4930-b0ee-8a6ea65687ed|Toilet;GP0|#54023efe-5443-41f4-98c9-065296a7c3d7;L0|#054023efe-5443-41f4-98c9-065296a7c3d7|service delivery10

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