'John Wick’ linked to Mamelodi gang-related killings under spotlight in Gauteng legislature
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Pretoria - “John Wick”, the character linked to gang-related killings in Mamelodi, this week came under the spotlight in the Gauteng legislature.
DA MPL Michael Shackleton enquired from Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko about “Wick’s” existence and whether his or her true identity had been established.
In response, Mazibuko said she only knew about “the character from a music genre known as amapiano”.
“I only know ”John Wick“ from these amapianos when people are dancing. Basho bathi ufikile John Wick (when they say John Wick has arrived),” she said.
For months there had been an outcry that “John Wick” was on the prowl and allegedly behind the killings of members of the so-called Boko Haram gang.
The police have, however, not corroborated the information from some concerned residents regarding “John Wick’s” existence.
In October, Police Minister Bheki Cele told the Pretoria News: “We have heard the name and until we find the person we will keep chasing, but not only that, there are many other people and I am not going to call names here.”
However, Cele said the police were guarding against being sent on a wild goose chase for people who didn’t exist.
Mazibuko said there had been seven murder cases reported to the police and it was established that suspects involved were four or more unknown persons, and firearms of many different calibres were used.
“Therefore the existence of ’John Wick’ as per the social media narrative could not be confirmed,” she said.
There had been no arrests so far in respect of any of the seven murders.
Mazibuko said there were no other similar vigilante groupings that existed in Mamelodi as suggested by Shackleton.
Shackleton said: “It is clear that many members of the public and especially people living in Mamelodi are satisfied and happy with the idea of vigilante justice taking place in their own hands in that community, and that does not bode well in how they perceive the SAPS when it comes to dealing with safety in that particular area.
“I would strongly encourage the SAPS to bring these vigilantes to justice and to deal finally with gang violence in that particular area.”
To deal with gang-related crimes, Mazibuko said community engagements were initiated through consultations with residents during a community imbizo.
“Police visibility has also been increased in the area through the deployment of combat teams to patrol the area.”