Pupils urged to be cautious during valedictory parties

Marc Truss.

With the matric valedictory season coming up, Cape Town Central community police forum (CPF) chairman Marc Truss urged people with school-going children to ask them to exercise caution while celebrating.

Every year, after matric exams have been completed, pupils go to beaches and open public open spaces to celebrate the end of their school career – usually with alcohol.

A statement released by the City said the enforcement services would deploy resources to all the known spots where matriculants traditionally congregate to mark the end of their school careers, while lifeguards would work extended hours at main beaches.

The City said in the past, the City’s law enforcement, metro police and traffic departments had had their hands full along the Atlantic Seaboard and False Bay coastline, with popular spots including Clifton, Maiden’s Cove, Camps Bay and Strandfontein beaches.

The City’s mayoral committee member for community services and health, Zaid Badroodien, said although the beach was an ideal place for pupils to make memories during the last days of their schooling years, the risks to personal safety were amplified by illegal drinking at beaches.

“Drinking is not allowed at any beach in Cape Town,” he said.

He added that it was a reality that these celebrations went hand in hand with alcohol use and if left unchecked, can devolve into a situation where people’s safety was compromised.

Offenders will have their liquor confiscated and receive a written notice to appear in court, with a fine of R500.

Lifeguards’ shifts have been extended from 10am until 8pm at the main beaches during the valedictory celebrations.

Mr Truss urged the public and authorities to join the monthly meetings as the attendance was low. “We need our partners to be here and we need to get the word out. The meeting presents an opportunity to get the information out on the table and discuss and address issues.”

The CPF meetings take place at the Akker Hall at Cape Town Central police station on the first Thursday of every month at 8am.

Central police reported a decrease in aggravated robbery, but an increase in common robbery for the week from Monday September 28 to Wednesday October 2.

They said purse, cellphone and chain snatching remained an ongoing challenge.

Theft of motor vehicles also increased, with motorbikes and VW Polos being targeted.

However, there had been a substantial decrease in thefts out of motor vehicles.

Mr Truss said robbery with weapons were still problematic, with suspected robbers using knives, scissors and other sharp objects as weapons.

“There are still too many robberies taking place. We have to take back our streets and report suspicious activity.”

Sea Point police’s Firearms Liquor and Second Hand Goods (FLASH) unit arrested four men who were caught with mandrax tablets in a stolen car in the early hours of Friday morning, October 4.

The white Toyota Conquest was pulled over and searched on Main Road.

Police found that the car had been stolen in Mitchell’s Plain. The men, aged between 30 and 38, were detained at Sea Point police station and were expected to appear in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court on Monday October 7.

Sea Point SAPS arrested a 28-year-old man for possession of drugs on Saturday October 5 after he was caught with a tik lolly containing tik in Graham Road.

In Green Point, a woman was allegedly robbed while walking to her car from Ocean View Drive. She said a man came out of the bushes and robbed her at gunpoint .

The suspect ran off towards Signal Hill with her cellphone, handbag containing credit cards, driver’s licence and house keys.