More than 1 000 cops have been deployed to the Western Cape’s crime hot spots in the past month.
Provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Khombinkosi Jula said the bulk of these, 790, were sent to the top 30 contributing cop shops.
Jula was speaking at a media briefing yesterday following the release of the latest crime statistics on Friday.
The latest murder statistics show that the Western Cape has the most murder hot spots out of all the provinces, with Nyanga at the top of the list.
Nationally, there was a 4.9 percent increase in murder cases, compared to the previous year. The latest stats between April 2015 and March 2016 shows that 18 673 people have been murdered.
In the Western Cape, 3 224 mense have been killed, up by 1.2 percent.
An analysis of South Africa’s latest crime statistics shows that arguments and misunderstandings, coupled with substance abuse, account for the highest number of contact crimes such as murder, rape and assault, Police Minister Nathi Nhleko said on Friday.
Out of the top 10 murder hot spots in South Africa, seven feature in the Western Cape.
Nyanga is first on the list in the province, followed by Gugulethu, Harare, Khayelitsha, Delft, Kraaifontein and Mfuleni.
The other three are Bethelsdorp in the Eastern Cape, and Inanda and Umlazi in KwaZulu-Natal.
Nyanga Community Policing Forum (NCPF) secretary, Dumisani Qwebe, said: “Overcrowding and poverty is a problem which needs to be handled before the numbers can decrease, but I feel that the police are working hard to help the situation.”
There is also just one police station in Nyanga, but Qwebe said the community has come on board by patrolling at weekends.
Jula said the new members were deployed to the areas most affected by crime.
“We have identified 30 stations of the 150 stations that contribute to 52 percent of the crime in this province,” Jula said.
“Most of the members were deployed into the areas known as disadvantaged areas.
“These particular stations – Bishop Lavis, Kraaifontein, Gugulethu, Manenberg, Nyanga, Harare, Delft and Khayelitsha – are the stations that are contributing negatively to the national picture of the South African Police Service.
Jula said 41 members were deployed to Nyanga, Gugulethu, Harare police stations, while Kraaifontein got 47 members, Khayelitsha 37, Mfuleni 33 and Delft got 18 additional members.
“The additions of these members have brought the capacity of the stations to 90 percent,” he said.
“In addition to the resources we also have lockdown operations and high density operations.
“We have already started seeing huge reductions (in crime) in the stations where we deployed the members,” he said.
When asked about the situation in Delft where 32 people were killed in August, Jula said the “situation is back to normal”.
“We are aware of the situation in Delft and we are monitoring it on a daily basis,” he says.
“It’s a situation we have stabilised, the situation is back to normal in Delft.
“We are very worried that so many deaths have happened. It will not happen again.”
But the provincial head said he was not aware of residents’ calls for an additional cop shop in Delft or Blikkiesdorp, but would look into the matter.
Community Safety MEC Dan Plato says Delft residents have been calling for more visible policing after two satellite stations were recently closed.
“We will see in the next coming days whether the situation in Delft has improved, I feel it is too early to tell.”
Plato says he is also aware that some of the newly deployed cops have already left the stations.
“Last week I had a meeting with officials from the Tygerberg cluster, one major complaint was that of the officers deployed, some have already left and were not there on a permanent basis,” he says.
“I will write a letter to the commissioner to find out what is going on.”