A police station was robbed in North West and suspects are alleged to have made off with a large number of firearms and ammunition.
This was revealed on Monday by the Democratic Alliance as it announced it would be visiting the Tsineng police station in the Joe Morolong area for a sight inspection following the robbery at the weekend.
The party said that a police officer was held at gunpoint while suspects made off with a large number of firearms and ammunition.
It said that it was concerned that this has happened at a time when unrest and a failed “insurrection” hang like a dark cloud over the country.
“The suspects allegedly got away with three R5 rifles with two magazines and 37 rounds of ammunition, two 12-bore pump actions with 103 rounds of ammunition, eight 9 mm pistols with five magazines and 98 rounds of ammunition,” said the DA Provincial Spokesperson of Transport, Safety & Liaison, Ofentse Mokae.
“This is a very serious and threatening act of criminality and cannot be allowed to glide under the radar. It is no secret that, following the recent unrest in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, there have been reports about looming attacks on police stations. This is in addition to the massive theft of ammunition from the Durban harbour.”
Firearms Control Amendment Bill brought in
The party said that it was more concerning that the government wants people to give up their firearms as a form of self-defence, while more and more criminals are busy arming themselves.
Recently, South African gun owners wrote to President Cyril Ramaphosa about the proposed amendments to the Firearms Control Act, which among other things, seeks to outlaw gun ownership for self-defence, restrict the types of firearms that security companies can use, and limit sports shooting and hunting firearms
In a letter addressed to President Cyril Ramphosa, SA Gun Owners Association Chairperson Damian Enslin said: “Our plea to you is that the draconian Firearms Control Amendment Bill, 2021 be withdrawn.”
The Bill, if passed, also severely restricts the possession and collection of ammunition.
Enslin said that last week’s insurrection in parts of Kwazulu-Natal and Gauteng has damaged South Africa’s international image and left malls, shops, factories, warehouses, and other infrastructure in ruins.
“This has resulted in thousands of honest, hard-working people losing their jobs, their livelihoods and income, leaving them and their families and dependants destitute,” he said.
Enslin also pointed out that the South African Police Service, whose constitutional mandate is to protect the country and its citizens, were outnumbered and overstretched during the riots.
“In SAGA’s view, had it not been for law-abiding and ordinary citizens defending the lives and property of others, using the very firearms that the Firearms Control Amendment Bill 2021 seeks to take away, the situation would have been very different,” expalined Enslin.
Additional reporting by By Narissa Subramoney