Po­lice to in­ten­sify fight against vi­o­lent crimes

African Times - - News - KARABO NGOEPE

THE po­lice are set to in­ten­sify the fight against vi­o­lent crimes in the coun­try as Min­is­ter Fik­ile Mbalula says enough is enough. De­liv­er­ing the crime stats, Mbalula said his of­fice had taken a zero tol­er­ance to­wards crime.

“Vi­o­lent crim­i­nals will re­ceive a pro­por­tional re­sponse to what they dish out. To­day I am say­ing to crim­i­nal gangs, Nilibambe Lin­gashoni, I am com­ing for you hard, enough is enough,” he said.

Mbalula said the coun­try had to ask it­self se­ri­ous ques­tions such as if they have ac­cepted liv­ing side by side with vi­o­lent crim­i­nals.

“Is crim­i­nal­ity a South African ci­ti­zen it­self? We must ask whether we have ac­cepted to live side by side with vi­o­lent crim­i­nals who lit­er­ally emote ter­ror across our na­tion, be it amavodo in the ru­ral ar­eas of Lusik­isiki where this past Satur­day we opened a new state of the art po­lice sta­tion or the hard liv­ings gangs across the Cape Flats. We must ask – have we ac­cepted to live side by side with vi­o­lent crim­i­nals in our big cities where car jack­ings and home in­va­sions are a com­mon phe­nom­e­non. We have no time. Crime is de­liv­er­ing ter­ror and grave harm to our peo­ple and the econ­omy. Our an­swer must be an em­phatic and rad­i­cal no. We must deal with crime in a rad­i­cal and en­er­getic way, our lan­guage must be clear and un­der­stood,” said Mbalula.

De­spite in­di­cat­ing that there was a drop of 1.8% in crime, Mbalula lashed out at of­fi­cers and ac­cused them of fail­ing the na­tion. He said po­lice were let­ting South Africans down by fail­ing to de­tect crimes.

He said in the past year, ap­prox­i­mately 2.1 mil­lion se­ri­ous crime counts were recorded, of which 1 738 980 were com­mu­nity re­ported se­ri­ous crimes. The lat­ter de­creased by 1.8% com­pared to the 2015/2016 fi­nan­cial year. Mbalula said the de­crease was driven mainly by re­duc­tions in all the broad crime cat­e­gories, namely con­tact-re­lated crime (3.3%), con­tact crime (2.4%), other se­ri­ous crime (2.0%) and prop­erty-re­lated crime (0.5%).

Con­tact crime de­creased by 2.4% in 2016/2017. The de­crease fol­lowed upon in­creases dur­ing the pre­ced­ing two fi­nan­cial years. The de­crease dur­ing 2016/2017 re­sulted in the fig­ure for the 17 com­mu­nity re­ported crimes de­creas­ing to a level lower than three years pre­vi­ously when the fig­ures started to in­crease. Con­tact-re­lated crime de­creased by 3.3% in 2016/2017, fol­low­ing upon a de­crease of 0.8% dur­ing the pre­ced­ing fi­nan­cial year and an in­crease of 1.9% recorded dur­ing ‪2014/20015.

Prop­erty-re­lated crime ex­pe­ri­enced a de­crease of 0.5% in 2016/2017. This fol­lows upon de­creases of 1.8% and 0.8% re­spec­tively dur­ing the two pre­ced­ing fi­nan­cial years. Other se­ri­ous crimes de­creased by 2.0% in 2016/2017, fol­low­ing upon de­creases of 4.1% in 2015/2016 and 2.2% dur­ing 2014/2015.

Mbalula was not happy with the in­crease in crimes that are con­sid­ered as in­di­ca­tors of the ef­fec­tive­ness of po­lice ac­tiv­i­ties, crimes de­tected as a re­sult of po­lice ac­tion. They in­creased from 0.3% in the pre­ced­ing fi­nan­cial year to an in­crease of 9.6%.

“This in­crease is too small and is in­dica­tive of the lazy ef­forts by the po­lice to de­tect such crime in or­der to make South Africa a safer place to live in. Po­lice in this in­stance are let­ting our peo­ple down and I am here to stop it. Gaut­eng, East­ern Cape, KwaZulu Natal and Western Cape must have in­creased po­lice ac­tion. When there is an in­crease in these sets of num­bers – po­lice ac­tion polic­ing, it in­di­cates more po­lice work hav­ing taken place, we con­tinue to do less here. We need to stop in­er­tia and in­no­vate,” said Mbalula.

He also be­moaned the in­crease in cash in tran­sit heists in the coun­try. He said com­pa­nies re­spon­si­ble for guard­ing and trans­port­ing the money were not do­ing enough to com­bat the scourge.

“We have cash in tran­sit crimes go­ing up – on the other hand, the fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tions are not in­vest­ing prop­erly in the high as­sets in tran­sit. The ar­moured vans we see on our roads do not com­pare with se­ri­ous armed ve­hi­cles we see in Europe in par­tic­u­lar. SABRIX and banks must in­vest more in proper equip­ment and in­form SAPS of high-value cargo well in time for plan­ning. In­ter­nal hir­ing in these com­pa­nies must ac­com­pany deeper se­cu­rity vet­ting and con­tin­ual lie-de­tec­tor tests and other meth­ods,” he said.

Lim­popo saw a 9,5 % de­crease in the num­ber of mur­der cases re­ported. The prov­ince now has the low­est rate in the en­tire coun­try fol­lowed by Mpumalanga and North West.

Pic­ture: Vis­ual Buzz SA

Min­is­ter of Po­lice Fik­ile Mbalula.

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