WATCH: Scores march for the reinstatement of dismissed top detective Jeremy Vearey
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Cape Town - Scores of church leaders, activists and community members from the Cape Flats marched to Parliament yesterday, in support of the former head of detectives Jeremy Vearey, after his dismissal from the police last week.
Supporters chanted “Hands off Jeremy Vearey now!”, with most of them carrying placards with the hashtag #JusticeForJeremy, and some with "Hands off our generals!!" calling for the reinstatement of Vearey.
One of the organisers, Reverend Michael Weeder, dean of St George’s Cathedral in Cape Town, said they were seeking Vearey’s reinstatement, and for what they called the malicious prosecution against him and others to be overturned.
Weeder said the current form of political and criminal-biased policing had to be expeditiously stopped, otherwise the malaise of the police services and its increasing lack of legitimacy would continue.
The campaign for Vearey gained momentum on social media across the country, with more than 1 400 people joining the group on Facebook, while some of the organisers planned to demonstrate outside the Union Buildings in Pretoria today.
While the police monitored the march, a memorandum calling for President Cyril Ramaphosa to intervene was handed over to Charles Ford, Regional Director of the Presidency, who promised to take it to the president.
"What we normally do, is to make sure that, if we receive a memorandum, it must go to the president. My role is to make sure that we put it in our administrative system, because, remember, this needs to be registered. That is how we track it, and from there, it will get to the president," said Ford.
Cape Flats Women's Movement chairperson Caroline Peters said the police had failed the communities on the Cape Flats, and demanded the president take action.
"We are finding bodies on our streets because good men like Vearey, Andre Lincoln and the rest of them are being persecuted. Every day, our women live in fear of being raped and killed," said Peters.
SA Communist Party (SACP) provincial secretary Benson Ngqentsu said to effectively deal with the rot in the police services and bring about stability in the province, the party would approach its political bureau or central committee to also write to the president for the establishment of a judicial commission of inquiry.
Ngqentsu said the tentacles of the rot were wider and affected the capacity to combat, prevent and investigate crime.
Bonteheuwel community activist Henriette Abrahams said she fully supported the call for the president to set up a commission of inquiry into Vearey's dismissal, and the alleged continuous harassment and ousting strategies against certain top cops and other individuals in the security cluster.
"No stone should be left unturned. Certain appointments, demotions, promotions and transfers should all be looked into, and actions by the cabal and their corrupt networks should be exposed and prosecuted for their part in destabilising the police, as it was a case of high treason," said Abrahams.
Videos: Armand Hough/African News Agency