Tembisans use rock barricade as boom gates in the community. Photo: Tembisa Community Forum/ Facebook.

Tembisans block exit routes to combat crime

Tembisans have resorted to using debris to barricade streets to substitute the lack of boom gates as a measure to deter criminals


Tembisans use rock barricade as boom gates in the community. Photo: Tembisa Community Forum/ Facebook.

Being under-resourced has not prevented Tembisans from finding creative means to combat crime in their neighbourhoods.


Emulating upmarket neighbourhoods which have made use of boom gates or boom barriers to monitor access control in their areas, some Tembisans have resorted to using debris to prevent access since buying the equipment and hiring a guard would cost them an arm and a leg.

Publicising this concept was the Tembisa Community Forum (TCF) which highlighted this creative concept as a measure to clamp down on criminal activity.

“These are the measures that Tembisans have taken to try and combat crime.”


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“In light of all these criminal events that are taking place in our kasi, as abahlali [people] what do you think would be a solution to the high rate of crime in Tembisa?” the forum asked its members on social media.

Residents of Tembisa use rocks to barricade streets to deter criminals. Photo: Tembisa Community Forum/ Facebook.


Upon observation of the responses, the residents of Tembisa seemed conflicted about this initiative.

Kagiso Moagi said: “Bahlali, this could work to our advantage and disadvantage. What if one of our neighbours requires emergency services, how will it get to them? And another question is how effective is this method and who does it benefit? We need to think about this carefully”.

Simphiwe Sigasa said: “Police we can all agree that they are unable to attend to our needs. I say let’s continue with CPF. And get those young men in our community involved and create more employment. I think most of our homes can afford at least R10 or R20 per month for peace of mind. And as we get those young men involved, then crime will decrease and it will also restore dignity in our community. And we need to learn to pull together as community not only when there is a crises. Together we can rise. Let’s create employment and that way we fighting poverty and crime at the same time. That’s my thoughts”.

Madi Metja raised the following:

  • Streetlights should be fixed but the community needs to report them though.
  • Private security companies can be approached and sections or streets can contribute to such services.
  • 360° cameras can be installed also at corners and monitored by elected security personnel.