The SAPS crime statistics for the period 1 April 2011 to 31 March 2012 were released today.
The fact that the Eastern Cape continues to have the highest murder ratio in the country at 48 murders per 100 000 of the population is a huge shock. Just last night another brutal murder took place in our province where a prominent elderly Kei Mouth resident was killed. Gauteng by comparison has a murder ratio of 26.6 per 100 000. Sadly the number of reported murders in the Eastern Cape has increased by 97 – or 2.8% — over the past year. Our province remains far too violent.
The second biggest shock is the high increase in robberies at non-residential premises which has increased by 31%. This means businesses are under siege from the criminal element and this ultimately impacts on their viability and on jobs. Robbery at residential premises has also increased by 12%. Car hijackings are up by 22%. These three crimes in particular strike fear into the hearts of people and need to be brought down as a matter of urgency.
A further concern is robbery with aggravated circumstance which is up by 7% and the dramatic spike in kidnapping by 27%
There has been an increase in 13 crime categories in the Eastern Cape and a decrease in 16 categories. The general trend of a number of crime categories coming down is welcomed but crime levels are far too high. Unless we embrace world class policing tactics we will never reduce crime to acceptable levels in our society. Coupled to that we need to have a world class provincial government administration so we can create the right environment for massive job creation.
There are numerous dedicated members of the SAPS who go the extra mile to reduce crime, sometimes at the cost of their lives. We remember them and salute their efforts.