Community safety and development will continue to be the focus of the Oakdale Neighbourhood Watch after they elected a new exco committee at last week’s annual general meeting.
Outgoing chairperson Tommy Milakovic, who gave up his position after recently moving out of the area, was replaced by Marius Coetser while Tanya van Breda is the new vice chairperson.
Mr Coetser said: “This community watch has done some excellent work in the past and it is my goal to see this group continue to improve while also helping us to achieve our future goals. The one issue that I will be addressing immediately is to get our volunteers properly equipped by applying to the City of Cape Town to get better equipment and also basic training in terms of firefighting and first aid.”
After stepping down from his position, Mr Milakovic added that he was proud to have been part of the group while he also applauded the hard work the group put into protecting the area last year.
Mr Milakovic said: “It was definitely a good year for us. In total we covered a total of 3 000km per month with our patrols and that comes to just over 3 600 hours that our volunteers spent on the streets. Considering the fact that there are just about 900 houses in Oakdale and we only have a core group of volunteer, this is a fantastic achievement. Hopefully this year, we can see more people volunteering their time as it takes a community to look after a community.”
Also at the meeting the group received feedback from Ward 6 councillor Brendan van der Merwe as well as from the Bellville SAPS, which was represented by Captain Lorette Dippenaar.
Both Mr Van der Merwe and Captain Dippenaar thanked the group for their hard work while they also stressed the importance of having neighbourhood watches as it helps authorities to keep a closer eye on the community.
Captain Dippenaar said: “The Oakdale Neighbourhood Watch and Bellville SAPS really enjoy a good relationship and hopefully we can continue this going forward. Recently (February 21), they assisted police with an operation where we were able to hand out fines to people illegally parking in the area and we were even to apprehend a driver that was at least three times over the legal drinking limit. These type of operations are beneficial for us to protect our communities and having assistance from groups like this, only makes our jobs easier.”