Eastern Cape residents living in a war zone

Issued by Bobby Stevenson, MPL
Shadow MEC for Community Safety

Residents of the Eastern Cape are now living in a war zone with the very real threat of being gunned down, raped or assaulted constantly hanging over their heads.

The latest quarterly crime statistics for October to December 2022, released today, show that a tidal wave of violent crime continues to sweep over the province, fueling a climate of fear, heartbreak and sorrow.

Behind these bloody statistics lie broken families, orphaned children, traumatized women and hunger due to the loss of breadwinners.

The statistics show that murder continues its upward trend. The Eastern Cape again has the highest per capita murder rate in the country, jumping from 19.7 last quarter to 22.5 per 100 000.

In the three months under review, 1 501 people were slaughtered across the province, a 15.1% increase compared to the same period last year.

Seven Eastern Cape police stations are now in the top 30 for murder, namely New Brighton, Mthatha, Ngcobo, Kwazakhele, Bityi, Dutywa and Bethelsdorp.

The massive spike in mass killings is a horror story, with 117 people murdered in just 48 incidents in the province. These figures are expected to jump even higher in the next quarter as the spate of mass killings recently recorded in the media are not included in these.

The war of terror against women also continues unabated, rising 9.3%, with 2100 rape cases opened over the three-month period in review. That is an average of roughly one woman raped every hour in our province alone!

Carjacking has increased by 46.6% to 548 cases, with Kwazakhele, New Brighton, Motherwell and KwaDwesi as the provincial hotspots. Likewise, Truck hijacking is up 38.5%, to 54 cases, with Mount Road, Motherwell, Algoa Park and Swartkops all hotspots.

Nelson Mandela Bay has become the Hijack capital of the Eastern Cape.

People are not even safe in their homes anymore, with robberies at residential properties up 13.3% to 532 cases.

The DA will continue to fight for a well-resourced police service that utilises modern technologies to keep communities safe. We need to get guns off the streets and radically improve crime intelligence.