OF 73 people killed in South Africa (SA) daily between April and September 2022, 30 were gunned down.
According to police crime statistics for the first and second quarter of the 2022/2023 financial year, 13 428 people were killed in SA in the period under review. Of these, 5 574 were shot and killed. This means a shocking 30 people are shot dead daily in SA.
”There is a gun violence epidemic in SA and the reason for this is because there are too many illegal guns in the country,” Gun Free SA researcher Claire Taylor said on Sunday. Releasing the statistics for the first quarter (from April to June 2022) in August, police minister Bheki Cele said 2 766 people were gunned down. In the first quarter, 912 people were gunned down in KwaZulu-Natal, where rapper AKA was shot and killed on Friday night.
The province tops the list of gun-related murders. In November, Cele alluded to this again, saying: “Firearms remain the weapon of choice in most of the reported murders where 2 808 people were shot and killed. 961 of the reported murders in KwaZuluNatal were as a result of firearms, followed by Gauteng with 768 murders and 526 people died from gunshot wounds in the Western Cape.”
Taylor said the government had to focus on recovering and destroying illegal guns in communities. “Having a roadblock here and a search and seizure operation there to recover one or two illegal guns is not enough.
“There has to be a specialised firearms unit that is intelligence-driven to recover and destroy illegal guns so that they don’t leak back into communities. “Government has to stop guns from illegally entering communities. The biggest source of illegal guns in communities in SA is legal guns owned by citizens and the state,” Taylor said.
She said citizens reported 24 guns stolen a day and police reported two guns stolen a day. “Once a legal gun is stolen, it gets into the hands of a criminal. There should be a tightening of control of guns and ensure gun laws are of a high standard and implemented.
“The most common weapon to commit a crime is an illegal firearm but the illegal firearms are often obtained through a legal gun owner.” KZN police yesterday said they were still looking for the unknown suspects who gunned down AKA, real name Kiernan Forbes. AKA and his lifelong friend and celebrity author Tebello “Tibz” Motsoane were shot outside Wish restaurant in Florida Road, Durban. Spokesperson Robert Netshiunda said the motive remains unknown. SowetanLIVE