2000

UNITED DEMOCRATIC MOVEMENT

MEDIA RELEASE


SEA POINT BOMB BLAST

STATEMENT ISSUED BY ANNELIZÉ VAN WYK, MP
UDM SPOKESPERSON FOR SAFETY AND SECURITY

The UDM extends its sympathy to those who were injured in the bomb blast last night outside a Sea Point restaurant.

Three weeks ago a bomb was found outside the same restaurant and deactivated. Allow us to repeat what we said then: "The Minister of Safety and Security was in no position to claim during his budget speech that urban terrorism is under control due to the success of Operation Good Hope. We believe the Minister should reserve comments of this nature until the perpetrators are brought to book."

Important questions must be answered by the Minister:

1. Months have passed since the St Elmo's bomb blast where the Minister publicly and very vocally promised that suspects would be apprehended in record time. What, if any, progress has been made in these investigations?

2. Why were the Cape Peninsula and the scourge of urban terror, only recently as an apparent afterthought, included in the nationwide Operation Crackdown? 

3. Why is the same restaurant targeted twice in 3 weeks, does this not point
to a certain motive?

The issue of protection rackets have been raised every time when prominent restaurants have been targeted with bombs. Yet the Minister has neither publicly nor, apparently, through investigation, responded to this possible realistic motive for urban terror.

It seems that Government is content to have us fear some sinister bogeyman with extremist political and religious motivations, rather than face up to the reality that urban terror is more often than not, an instrument used by gangs and organised crime. The motivation is primarily money and power; organised criminals all over the world throughout history have used protection rackets to achieve this end. Let us not resort to convenient scapegoats who, like the bogeyman, can be driven out occasionally but never caught. What we need is real and concerted police work, combined with community involvement and awareness. The community have shown their willingness to assist, Mr Tshwete, it is time for you to keep up your end of the bargain.

Enquiries:
Annelizé van Wyk, MP
UDM Spokesperson for Safety and Security

Cape Town
11 June 2000