News agency, Cape Town, South Africa
Monday July 22nd 2019

Skollie hide out discovered

Skollies were hiding out in this drain, covering the hole with plastic so that passersby could not see where they came from or where they disappeared to. Photo: Nombulelo Damba/WCN

They come out the ground to rob people, and then disappear. Residents of Khayelitsha D-Section have been puzzled as to where skollies who are mugging people on Phakamani Road disappeared to. They seemed to appear out of thin air and then disappear again.But their secret hideout was revealed – by a 12-year-old boy.

Resident Azanele Luzipho, 21 was robbed on Phakamani Road on Wednesday morning and residents say she was not the first victim. The skollies targeted people walking to or from the Nokqublela train station in the early morning or evening.

“I was on my way to work around six in the morning,” said Luzipho.

“There was no one following me but within minutes two men came from nowhere and took my hand bag and cell phone.

“They pointed a knife at me so I wouldn’t shout. When they left I looked around but I didn’t see where they went to.”

She said then a 12-year-old boy showed her an open drain disguised with plastic.

“When I passed it I thought it was a dumping site. I didn’t realise that there were criminals hiding there,” said Luzipho.

Resident Akhona Mbikwana, 35, said Luzipho was not the first person to be robbed there.

“I don’t understand why these drains were left open in the first place. We’ve been complaining about people being robbed on their way to work,” he said.

He said he was also worried about children falling into open drains.

“This place is next to the train station and shopping centre and students also pass here on their way to school. It needs to be closed or we will close it ourselves.”

City of Cape Town media officer Charles Cooper said the missing manhole cover next to Phakamani Road had not been reported to the city.

But he said the matter had now been brought to their attention and a team had gone out to fix it.

“Within hours of the newspaper (Daily Sun) alerting the City to the situation, a site inspection was conducted by officials from the Water and Sanitation Department,” said Cooper.

He said the Water and Sanitation Department teams was covering the openings and ensuring that the area is safe.

He said new lockable manhole covers would be fitted by the end of the week. – Nombulelo Damba, West Cape News

Tags: cape town, City of Cape Town, Khayelitsha, water and sanitation

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