Two more Parkwood mothers had to say goodbye to their sons last week after Leeroy Peterson, 29, and Ikaraam Adams, 37, were shot dead in separate incidents.
In the wake of the two murders and two attempted murders in Parkwood in just two days, Ward 66 councillor William Akim is now hoping that a plan to install CCTV cameras in the area will help to alleviate criminal activities.
In the first attempted murder on Monday April 2, at 12.30pm, a 19-year-old man was shot in the right leg by two men as he was walking down Abdulla Moosa Walk.
Just 24 hours later, around 1.30am on April 3, a 27-year-old man was shot in his torso, in Ivy Road.
Mr Akim said three areas in Parkwood had already been identified to have the first sets of cameras installed. He said the request for cameras came from ward 66 neighbourhood watch members and residents.
Some of these members would be selected to work in the control room.
“In order for these members to be part of this project they would have to follow strict procedures,” he said.
They are to have no criminal record and would have to go through screening before they can operate in the control rooms,” said Mr Akim.
He said the cameras would benefit the community as well as SAPS.
“The cameras will benefit witnesses who fear to testify. The cameras will provide the accurate date and times and SAPS could use it as a form to identify these criminals.”
The cameras will cost an estimated R250 000 and will be paid for from the ward’s operational budget as part of upgrade projects.
But for Ikaraam and Leeroy and many others, the cameras are too little, too late. The two fatal shootings both took place on Tuesday April 3.
Leeroy was gunned down 2am in Parkers Walk, sustaining two bullet wounds to the back of his head.
His mother, Beverly Booysen, said she was heartbroken over the death of her son and said he was not a gangster. “I miss him a lot I cannot eat since the day he was shot. I am heartbroken.”
Ms Booysen said it was as if Leeroy knew it was his last few days on earth as he had spent almost the whole of last week and the Easter weekend with her, which was out of the ordinary.
“He was walking around here in his gown and we were laughing because I told him he cannot walk outside like that.”
She added that she would remember her son for being a soft hearted person who would give to those in need.
Ikaraam was killed around 3.15am in Hoosain Parkers Walk.
His mother, Fatima Adams, said her son had been stabbed earlier in the evening but refused to seek medical attention. When she later heard the shots going off , she had no idea it was Ikaraam who had been killed.
“My neighbours knocked on my door and told me that he had been killed. He was the apple of my eye and my second eldest son.”
Ms Adams said Ikaraam was not a violent person and that he had not involved in any gang activities.
“He was well known to the community and was a very soft person. He did not even backchat. This cannot go on like this, having to bury your children is just unfair, something must be done about it,” she said. Ikaraam leaves behind an eight-year-old son.
Pastor Paul Phillips, a community activist from the Voice of Parkwood organisation, said there are no “proactive programmes” to put an end to the crime and gangsterism in Parkwood.
“You cannot respond to a problem, this means you are responding to a crime situation. Then lives have already been lost, they have to react or prevent the criminal activities before it happens. When the police is called they respond hours or three to four days later, “ he said.
Pastor Phillips said promises have been made by Grassy Park police as well as Community safety MEC Dan Plato to the Parkwood community but there have been no positive outcomes as yet.
Grassy Park SAPS Warrant Officer Wynita Kleinsmith said five separate murder and attempted murder cases were opened with Grassy Park police between April 1 and April 4.
Six people, had been arrested in connection with the shootings and “all possible links are under investigation”.
In response to a query about allegations of poor service from Grassy Park SAPS, station commander Lieutenant Colonel Christian Esau said he invited the community to make an appointment to see him to raise their concerns so these issues could be addressed.
He said the shootings have subsided since the arrest of a sixth person.
“SAPS urge the community to go to the court in full capacity and to raise there concerns in not wanting this culprits back in there area,” sad Lieutenant Colonel Esau.
He said he was not aware of the plans to have cameras installed in Parkwood but welcomed the idea.