The latest Eastern Cape crime statistics highlight what a brutal and violent society we are living in, where we are haunted by the fear of the criminal element and our general feeling of the lack of safety.
We are losing our moral values and basic humanity. There is no longer respect for human life, with people engaging in senseless and brutal crimes. Criminals clearly no longer fear being caught.
We need to rebuild the pillars of society, and this means a new form of partnership policing.
We need a collective effort from SAPS, the community, businesses, security companies and the municipalities to rebuild effective community police forums that can take back control of our streets.
Murder has continued to rise, up a staggering 3.9% (up from 3,815 to 3 965), meaning on average close to 11 people are being murdered each day in the province.
The Eastern Cape has five of the top 30 stations in terms of murder, with Mthatha 6th on the list, with an increase of 13.1% (from 160 to 181); Bethelsdorp at 15th, up 12.6% (from 127 to 143), Lusikisiki at 16th, up 30.9% (from 97 to 127) Kwazakhele at 20th, spot up 4.8% (from 104 to 109) and Ngcobo 23rd, up 15.7% (from 89 to 103).
The wave of gender-based violence sweeping through the province is also clearly reflected in the stats, with sexual offences up an unacceptable 7.9% (from 8094 to 8731). That’s 24 sexual assaults a day!
Lusikisiki is the fourth highest police station in the country in terms of sexual offenses, with a 40.5% increase in reported cases (from 210 to 295).
Gangsterism continues to terrorise the Northern Areas with the Gelvandale and Bethelsdorp stations second and third when it comes to attempted murder in the country. Attempted murder in the province increased by 3.3% (up from 2232 to 2305).
Other violent crimes are all on the increase, with assault with the intent to inflict serious bodily harm, up 4.3%; common assault, up 6.9%; common robbery, up 8.8%; and robbery with aggravating circumstances, up 0.7%.
There was a total of 68,416 contact crimes recorded in the Eastern Cape the last financial year.
That’s roughly eight people affected by a contact crime every hour!
It is clear the police are failing in curbing crime and the public have lost faith in the police’s ability to protect them.
The vigilantism that is boiling away beneath the surface will explode, unless we have more effective policing in this province.
We need a society where order prevails over chaos.
The DA will strive to ensure that SAPS becomes a more effective crime fighting machine by promoting amongst other ideas the concept of partnership policing.