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Tembisa neighbourhood watch saves community from criminal reign of terror

Phomolong Neighbourhood Watch patrollers. Picture: Moshe Mohlala

The Phomolong Neighbourhood Watch in Tembisa caught two suspected criminals on Monday after a weeks-long crime spree.

The suspects were caught on Monday after they had stolen goods from a neighbour's house they lived next door to. Two other suspects managed to get away.

Residents living in the burgled house said that every morning when leaving for work, there would be someone in the street roaming around acting suspicious.

“The community gave us the information and we followed up,” said Moshe Mohlala, who is part of the Phomolong Neighbourhood Watch and is the head of safety in Phomolong.

“We proceeded with the suspects to where one of them stays, and found goods such as robots, tools and copper which the suspects had allegedly stolen. Police were called in at around 4pm, but only arrived at 11pm after we had dealt with the situation,” said Mohlala.

He said the neighbourhood watch was formed in 2017 after the community became tired of inefficient policing in the area. Members of the watch understand the dynamics of the community and are able to recover stolen goods, something that is very difficult with police. “The community support us, but the parents of suspects respond negatively”.

Cena Ngomane, a resident, said “They make the community feel safer, although others don’t show the same kind of enthusiasm. I am still happy that the neighbourhood watch is around.”

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