Notorious gang threatens Orange Farm residents
By Lesiba Lekgetho
Community members from Orange Farm Township are living in fear following terrorism from a gang of young boys who call themselves the ‘Wrong Turn’.
Since 2010 the community has been plagued by gang violence due to unemployment or impoverishment of the youth who then resort to rob businesses and steal from people for survival.
The Wrong Turn is the most notorious gang in Orange Farm, Sebokeng and Mid Vaal and its members can be recognised by the pangas they carry and by the trail of destruction they leave behind.
The gang has turf wars with rival gangs in the area and allegedly does not hesitate to stab anyone who gets in their way.
According to police spokesman, Tshifhiwa Mitileni, the boys carry dangerous weapons from pangas, knives to other sharp objects.
“The youngest of these boys is only 17 years old and most of them have dropped out of school,” he said. “Findings from our investigations indicate that some of these boys who came back from initiation schools said they were now men battling for superiority against rival initiates. We have also confiscated tablets meant for patients suffering from high blood pressure and anti-retroviral (ARV) tablets,” he added.
Mitileni also said the police have been holding public meetings with residents and so far it has been difficult to make arrests as members of the public, or victims were not coming forward with information.
“We appeal to residents to come forward if they have any information,” Mitileni said.
“We have been working closely with community policing forums, which remain committed to fight crime in their respective areas,” he added.
One of the concerned residents of Orange Farm, Busisiwe Moloi said she became scared such that she could not even walk to the nearest tuckshop.
“I am even worried about my son who has to walk to school, because I have heard that these Wrong Turn boys just attack people whenever they feel like it, without taking their personal belongings such as cell phones and wallets,” she said.
“Another thing that scares me is that my neighbours are saying they are getting tired of these boys, and they will be forced to take matters into their own hands if these boys are not arrested,” Moloi added.
Ward Counsellor Lahliwe Rapapadi and committee member of the ward council, Jacob Mokgwaba, showed concern and they echoed same sentiments saying the community is fed-up with living in terror of being attacked.
They fear the outcome when the community takes the law into their own hands to mete out justice to gangsters. The community’s previous frustration saw them burning down houses suspected to be living gang members.