BCM jacks up Ebuhlanti security with CCTV cameras
East London will be safer this festive season after the R10m Buffalo City Metro spent installing CCTV cameras in certain crime hotspots, including popular hangout Ebuhlanti.
The city is installing 50 CCTV cameras in Ebuhlanti, Quigney and Southernwood in its endeavour to fight crime in these areas.
The cameras have not yet gone live, but city spokesperson Thandy Matebese says by the weekend, or December 10 at the latest, the eyes in the sky should be live.
In Ebuhlanti, also known as Marina Glen, 11 cameras have already been strategically installed on five poles.
“The cameras will be monitored at the Fleet Street control room by the city’s law enforcement and the city’s ICT centre will help by providing analytics when an arrest has been made when that is needed,” Matebese said.
BCM mayor Xola Pakati said the cameras were part of the metro’s festive season safety campaign.
“We know that criminals are also gearing themselves up for criminal activities as people prepare to have fun during the holidays.
“We started in the CBD and we chose Quigney because it is a key suburb in our city. We want people to be safe in Ebuhlanti as that spot is very popular and we want to see the criminal activities that are happening there and react speedily to the incidents,” he said.
Matebese said the infrastructure cost R6m and accessories, including the cameras and other gadgets, a further R4m.
When the Dispatch visited Ebuhlanti last week, irate braai stand owners said they had no knowledge of the installation of the cameras as BCM gave them no prior notice.
The owners’ committee chair Nonkqubela Gobinduku said: “We just saw people working last week but we did not know that these are cameras. We don’t know that this will help. Yes crime is rife as our clients are mugged and robbed of their cellphones but we don’t know how the cameras will assist in the situation.”
The committee deputy chair Ntombiyakhe Madolo said the R10m could have been used to fix everything that is wrong with Ebuhlanti.
“Toilets are not working here, we, including our clients, are forced to use the bushes. We requested police presence here to fight crime not cameras.
“We asked them to fix the drainage system as this place floods during rainy days. For years we have been requesting shelters as we get sick from being exposed to the sun and rain but they have not done that,” Madolo said.
Three cameras have been installed at the John Bailie Road and Buffalo Park Drive traffic circle and six were installed on Thursday near Buccaneers.
East London police spokesperson Warrant Officer Hazel Mqala said: “This will really assist us in solving criminal cases in these areas. When residents open cases the CCTV footage usually helps as the cameras cover a wide area, not just the area where they are installed.”..