Cape Town – Police confiscated knives, drugs and a pair of handcuffs at three schools in Mitchells Plain in just a week.
Shockingly, bullets were found in front of a gate at one school.At Aloe Junior High School, 16 knives, a screwdriver and handcuffs were found in the schoolbags of children between the ages of 12 and 16 years old.
At Cornflower Primary School, police found three .38 special revolver bullets just outside the school gate, believed to have been dropped by someone before they entered the premises.The school’s caretaker found the bullets, wrapped in newspaper, while preparing to open the gates on Thursday.
At Aloe High School police found dagga, a bone used as an instrument to smoke the drug, condoms and a small hookah pipe.
In the joint operation between police and Law Enforcement that started last week, police searched several classrooms and the bags of over 280 pupils at the schools.
Lentegeur Police Station Commander, Elizabeth Hermanus, says the children were not searched as their parents were not present to give consent.
Police also searched alleged drug dens in the schools’ vicinity and arrested suspects in possession of tik and dagga.
Hermanus said it should serve as a warning to pupils who bring dangerous weapons to school.
“At Aloe Junior, we found the most dangerous of weapons, these were grades 8, 9 and 10 pupils,” she says.
“These were mainly male students and the items were found inside their bags, as we did not carry out body searches.
“We want this to be a warning for these children and we spoke to them during the search, that if these weapons were found in their possession, they will be arrested. They will face jail and have a criminal record and will not find employment.”
Hermanus said police were shocked to find the ammunition at Cornflower Primary: “These were found on the perimeter, which is sad because this is a primary school.”
Hermanus could not confirm whether the weapons were linked to gangs in the area.
Jessica Shelver, the spokesperson for Western Cape Education MEC Debbie Schafer, says they are aware of the ammunition found: “The Safe Schools Call Centre contacted the school. The bullets were not found on the school premises so we will not investigate. However, SAPS are more than welcome to.”