LATEST CRIME STATISTICS
Released 30 June 2008, Johannesburg – BACSA remains deeply concerned that the crime level in South Africa remains unacceptably high overall and is further exacerbated by high levels of violence that threaten the feeling of safety and security that citizens have in the country. The latest release of crime statistics by the Minister of Safety and Security do show, however, that some gains are being made in reducing the level of many categories of serious crimes. “The examination of our uniquely violent crime types reveal many complex sets of causes. Minister Nqakula highlighted the importance of strong community action and organization in fighting social contact crimes. Where community action is strong, crimes have reduced measurably, he said. And while there has been a 6.4% reduction in contact crimes, this reduction is not within the 7-10% reduction target set by Government four years ago,” says BACSA CEO Siphiwe Nzimande.
And although, robbery with aggravating circumstances has decreased overall by 7.4% between the period 2006/2007 and 2007/2008, BACSA remains deeply concerned about the increases in its subcategories as reflected in the following trio of crimes:
- Business robberies (up by 47.7%);
- House robberies (up by 13.5%)
- Carjacking (up by 4.4%) and truck jacking (up by 39.6%).
“We are heartened that in Gauteng, where the joint Step Change Working Group has concentrated a significant degree of its efforts, that business robberies are increasing at a lower rate of 13.5% as opposed to the national average of 47.7%. The increases in other provinces such as KZN (up by 92.9%) and Western Cape (up by 222.3%) in relation to business robberies shows displacement from Gauteng in all likelihood and remains a high concern of business both in relation to the direct and indirect costs associated with these increases. BACSA is working with Government and industry partners in these provinces as part of the broadening of the roll-out of strategies and lessons learned in Gauteng” says Nzimande.
In relation to the trio crimes, we concur with the observation made by Government that there are shifts in the trend that the preponderance of Business Robberies at non-residential premises are targeting small businesses, ATMS and now more recently petroleum fueling stations. We need to ensure that measures are developed and implemented and resources deployed to address these shifts, particularly in GP, KZN, WC and North West,” said Nzimande. “Where all key stakeholders and industry partners in addressing a particular crime type have been involved, we are heartened that the multi-pronged and multi-stakeholder approach is showing success. This confirms the approach that BACSA has taken in addressing priority crimes in particular. An example of this is the success story of the reductions in Cash-In-Transit heists, where in the year under review, CIT robberies have decreased by 15.4%. As the issue of addressing crime is complex, we need to see more of these types of partnerships, where information is shared so that planned attacks are prevented, crime syndicates disrupted and the markets removed for stolen goods”, says Nzimande. “Business is making a huge contribution in support of Government to effectively fight crime. Going forward, our support will continue primarily in the following 2 priority areas:
- The significant improvement of the performance of the Criminal Justice System such that it acts as a deterrent to crimes; and
- The reduction of violent organized crime (i.e., the trio of crimes) which is being addressed as a matter of urgency”.
“We are steadfast in our viewpoint that in relation to the crime statistics and crime trends Government needs to release these more frequently and include the performance of the entire Criminal Justice System. BACSA will continue to influence this outcome through its sustained partnership with Government. More is required in relation to the performance scorecard of the Criminal Justice System e.g., number of arrests, rates of conviction, time taken to process cases through to the courts and the effectiveness of rehabilitation,” Nzimande says.
BUSINESS AGAINST CRIME SOUTH AFRICA
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FERRIER INTERNATIONAL keeping you informed and thank BACSA for their latest media release and viewpoint on CRIME in South Africa.