Home Opinion and Features Time for an intergrated crime approach

Time for an intergrated crime approach

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It is unfathomable how the lives of more than a thousand children have been ended abruptly despite their rights being enshrined in the Constitution.

SOUTH AFRICA - Cape Town - 12 September 2019 - Minister of Police Bheki Cele and his department released crime stats before parliament today,Western Cape is still on the rise when it comes to crime whith Nyanga Police station still being number 1 on the list .Photograph :Phando Jikelo/African News Agency(ANA)

IN JULY, Police Minister Bheki Cele tabled his budget vote speech and revealed that the amount set aside for the operations of the country’s force was R97.5 billion.

The budget estimated for the 2020/21 financial period, he said, was R104.3bn.

In his address to Parliament, Cele noted that the SAPS worked in a highly contested territory, not only in South Africa, but across the borders.

He said police officers were often expected to operate in highly densely populated areas where there were no roads, no street addresses, no street lights and no street cameras.

Cele also said the reduction of trio crimes – house and business robberies as well as vehicle hijacking – could not be tackled by the police alone, but required an integrated approach which involves and includes communities and spheres of government.

What has been clear from the crime statistics released is that plenty of work beckons.

The total number of sexual offences committed from April 2018 to March 2019 is 52 420, while the murder rate has increased by 3.4% compared with the last year.

The continued injustices meted out against this country’s children are shattering. Up to 1014 were murdered over the past year.

It is unfathomable how the lives of more than a thousand children have been ended abruptly despite their rights being enshrined in the Constitution.

Up to 60% of murders are said to occur on weekends between 9pm and 3am, with guns and knives the most used weapons. The Nyanga police station in the Western Cape reported the highest number of hijackings.

We simply can’t go on like this.

This is where we all need to declare war against crime, every street, every community, every sector and department. We simply cannot rely on the police alone.

It starts with the simple man reporting the theft of street lights in his neighbourhood to ensure no one is robbed in a dark area. It also speaks of communities not clogging up streets to allow the police to respond speedily.

It starts with that relative taking charge and preventing that little girl from being sexually assaulted and reporting the very same family member committing the crime to the police.

When it comes to tackling crime, united we stand, divided we fall.