Speech Notes by Marshall von Buchenroder (MPL): Response to SOPA 2019

Honourable Speaker
Honourable Premier
Honourable MECs
Honourable members of the house
Ladies and gentlemen in the public gallery

I greet you all today

It is a great honour to stand before you to debate on the empty state of the province address. Like many residents that go to bed on a empty stomach. This is not a good story to tell.

They say give credit where it is due. Unfortunately Hon. Premier, I cannot give credit but rather constructive criticism. Under your leadership in the fifth term this province has rather regressed than progressed, however, well done on taking the message script from the DA policy on securing our borders. We must secure our borders and only allow properly documented people into our country. They cannot rob South Africans from any opportunity.

Honourable Premier, you are saying that consequence management will be instituted to all responsible for the downgrade of the Mthatha Airport. Whilst I concur with your statement, it is a bit too late in the game. The damage is done and the province as well as the nation has felt it loud and clear. Stop being reactive but rather be proactive in all what you are doing. There is a saying: prevention in better then cure.
When someone lives in fear they will never reach their full potential nor will they be able to take advantage of the opportunities. When we constrain individuals in pursuing their goals, we are constraining the well-being of our communities. Personal safety is a prerequisite for creating an enabling environment in which all can thrive in.

One must acknowledge that there are moderate successes in reducing crime levels in the country since 1994 but more is needed and the Democratic Alliance is the only beacon of hope. Many citizens still don’t feel safe nor do they trust that their property is free from crime. More than 1 in 3 households avoid going into open spaces unaccompanied because of their fear of crime. Almost 1 in 4 households would not allow their children to play unsupervised by an older person. Only a mere 14% of people feel safe to walk around after dark in their own areas.

Criminal activity cannot be allowed to continue tearing apart the fabric of our communities as well as not poisoning the human psyche. There is a lot of talk and no action when it comes to reducing the crime rate in the province. It is nice to have an Anti-Gang strategy, yet Honourable Premier; people in the Northern Areas of Port Elizabeth are being killed on a daily basis. Yes let me repeat daily, not once a week but daily. This cannot be the norm.
Furthermore, someone in Nelson Mandela Bay had said in the media that it is the safest metro in the province. What is he smoking? Let us walk the talk and be proactive in our approach to fighting gangs.
We must stop the web of terror that crime throws over our country. Many of us have been deeply traumatized in one way or the other, to a point where one becomes even suspicious of their fellow citizens to keep you safe.

Honourable Premier, you say in your speech on page 6, “our combined energies and brainpower are needed” but the latest crime stats in the Province speak another language. They are as follows:

  1. Murder 2010/ 2011 3179 report cases 2017/18 3815, this is a 20% increase.
  2. Attempted Murder 2010/11 1701, 2017/18 2232, again a 30.8% increase.
  3. Drug related crimes 2010/11 8419, 2017/18 18 936 reported, a staggering 125% increase.
  4. The province is also has the second highest murder recorded for women and children.

The following are purposes of the Western Cape Community Safety:

  1. Determine policing needs and priorities;
  2. Monitor police conduct;
  3. Oversee the effectiveness and efficiency of the police service, including receiving reports on the police service;
  4. Promote good relations between the police and the community;
  5. Assess the effectiveness of visible policing, to name a few.
  6. A provincial ombudsman.

By following this, the Department could make a positive dent in the safety of our communities that are deeply affected with crime. With visible policing and good relations, it could bring the mentioned stats down, making our communities safer.

When I was small the story of Humpty Dumpty was drilled into me. And today it is so relevant when it comes to the ANC. Humpty Dumpty had a great fall and all the kings’ horses and all the kings’ men couldn’t put him back together again. So will the ANC fall on 8 May 2019, and all comrades and Bosasa friends will not be able to put it back together again.

Only the Democratic Alliance has a vision of an open opportunity society for all where children are safe from harm. Citizens are able to walk in our city and townships without any fear. Criminals are caught promptly and prosecuted speedily.

Our dream for South Africa is one South Africa for ALL, underpinned by our value of Freedom, Fairness, Opportunity and Diversity for all.

Safety is an important tool of the state to deliver on the redress, reconciliation and delivery of the past. Only under a DA Government in Nelson Mandela Bay did we establish a well-run metro Police. The Buffalo Metro is struggling for the last three years to get permission from the MEC. There is no will in the ANC to better the lives of the people.

The DA is the only hope for a One South Africa for all whereby every citizen is free from crime. We will increase the number of operations SAPS member from 157380 to 250000 that are well trained. We will also increase the number of detectives with an additional 40000.

Under a DA government we will strengthen the judicial system to prevent the high number of cases that are withdrawn and also to reduce the backlog. Also to reintroduce the special units like Gang Unit and Narcotics unit and so on.

We all have the opportunities in our hands to vote for real change that will bring about the Dream of One South Africa for All.

Thank you.