Hawston murder – Targeting of SAPS and Family members condemned
Statement by Dan Plato, Western Cape Minister of Community Safety
I condemn in the strongest possible terms the alleged targeted attack on the acting station commander in Hermanus, Colonel, Rounita Burgess, her family and friends during a biker’s rally in Hawston.
I wish to extend my deepest condolences to Colonel Burgess for the loss of her daughter, Randy Burgess, as well as the friends and family of Mr Rudi Salo who also lost his life in the attack.
While the details and reasoning for the altercation which preceded the attacks are still unclear, allegations in the media today that it was a deliberate hit because of the Colonel’s hard stance on gangsterism and organised criminal activity, such as drugs and poaching, are of a serious concern.
The callous and brazen nature of the attack requires a strong and coordinated approach in support of every police official in the Hermanus cluster who works tirelessly to clamp down on illegal activities in that region. These officers are putting their lives on the line to protect our communities and we cannot allow criminals to get away with these murders.
We all have a choice whether we act within the boundaries of the law or whether we become a criminal. When you do not speak out against the criminals around you, you choose to become an accessory to crime.
I will be meeting with the provincial police management to ensure that appropriate and effective policing support is provided to Colonel Burgess in this difficult time and also to the rest of the Hermanus cluster to ensure that those responsible- the shooter and those who ordered the shooting alike -face the full might of the law.
I urge anyone with information on any of the allegations to report it to their nearest police station, or if they would like to remain anonymous they can call CrimeLine on 08600 10111.
Criminals, gangsters and drug kingpins like to believe that they operate above the law and are untouchable due to the fear they instil in communities. I am confident that the South African Police Service (SAPS) in the province will show them otherwise and that they’ll have the community’s full support in doing so.
Spokesperson for Minister Plato
Cell: 079 694 1113