No mercy is what government and the Minister of Police should have expected when releasing South Africa’s unsettling crime statistics for the past year on Tuesday. Political parties have weighed in with their criticism of the situation and authorities responsible for law and order are lambasted for not managing a potential crisis.
Renewed South Africa Party
Renewed South Africa Party (RSA.P) national leader Cornelis Roelofse expressed grave concern about the latest crime statistics. “Budget after budget ministers promised a reduction in crime if the SAPS’s budget is increased and more Police officers are employed. Despite this, crime is steadily increasing.
“The public has lost trust in the Police because of Police officers that are involved in crime and the rising violent crime rate. Partnership policing is impossible when the public loses confidence in the Police.
With three previous national commissioners who left SAPS under a cloud, it is no wonder that the morale in the Police is low and public trust declining.
“Criminality in the Police means that taxpayers are paying salaries of criminals. This has to stop.
“The Police have preferred quantity over quality, recruiting more officers in a large number that are not competent. Good Police officers are being weighed down by the incompetence of others.
“Good policing is built on six pillars, namely excellent management, proper resourcing, good visible policing that leads to partnerships resulting in intelligence and good investigations.
“The Police are not void in any of these. Strategic management is needed to salvage this unacceptable situation and to tackle the remaining five pillars.”
Party Of Action
Party Of Action (POA) national leader Billy Nyaku expressed the belief that looking at the crime stats there was a huge dark cloud hanging over Limpopo where a dramatic increase has been witnessed in almost all crimes. “POA states firmly that the ANC government in Limpopo has never been shy about its apathy to (make) ensure Police stations across the province (are) fully staffed, resourced and effective. Areas such as Mankweng, Polokwane, Seshego and Thohoyandou have recorded sharp increases in murder, residential robbery, sexual assault, drug related crime, carjacking, etc.” Police visibility on the streets in those areas has, however, never been prominent, he indicated.
The ANC government, Nyaku said, was incapacitated to arrest the unbearable situation that made every citizen in Limpopo susceptible to violent crimes. “POA believes the ANC government always had a burning willingness to spend millions and millions over protection of VIPs while turning a blind eye to operational matters of Police stations in the province.
“POA has noted the ANC’s dismal failure to curb or lower levels of unemployment and poverty which may be some of the contributory factors to crime. Undocumented foreigners are roaming the streets of Limpopo and in numerous occasions they are reported to have committed crime.” He further stressed that the ANC has never been vocal about bribery cases that involve Police and traffic officers.
“POA is never shocked by these stats. POA has been expecting such, on account of a non-caring government that is not capacitated to put the safety of Limpopo citizens first.”
Congress of the People
Congres of the People (Cope) Provincial Secretary Erick Mohlapamaswi said it was very disappointing to realise the statistics looked the way they did, especially where cash-in-transits and other serious crimes were concerned. The increase in serious crimes indicated that government was not serious about the security of South Africans. It showed South Africa’s Police system was failing, he reckoned.
He attributed the root of the problem to lack of personnel. “We can’t blame the men on the ground when the government can’t produce sufficient personnel. Government is failing and overworking the current Police officials.” The situation also reflected on poorly guarded borders with people randomly crossing into South Africa, according to Mohlapamaswi.
Cope Limpopo was not happy with the statistics, he said and added that government, who by their own admission had dropped the ball, urgently needed to play their part.
Economic Freedom Fighters
Comment from newly elected Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) Provincial Chairperson Jossey Buthane is still awaited.
In a media statement Democratic Alliance (DA) Limpopo spokesperson on safety and security Katlego Suzan Phala said the shocking statistics proved that citizens were not and did not feel safe in their homes and on the streets due to the ANC’s failure to put all South Africans first.
“The increase in various crimes is a result of Police stations in Limpopo that are extremely under-resourced, under-staffed, under-trained and under-equipped. To com-
pound this, the failing ANC spends R9,1 million to protect one VIP while only spending
R1 500 per person to keep the people of South Africa safe. It is clear that the lives of politicians matter more than the lives and safety of citizens.”
African National Congress
Limpopo African National Congress Provincial Executive Committee (ANC PEC) spokesperson Donald Selamolela commented saying that they noted the results and called on the Police service to double on their efforts to fight back crime, particularly because the safety of people remained sacrosanct.
“We call on the people of Limpopo to work side by side with the Police and give them the necessary support, because crime is a societal issue and affects all of us. The solution starts with each and every one of us.”
Story: YOLANDE NEL