Pinetown airs crime siege woes

2013-03-08 00:00

BUSINESS and government representatives and local residents in Pinetown are calling for greater co-operation in order to save business from the siege of crime.

In a meeting this week at the Premier Hotel in Pinetown, representatives of the Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industry, local government and residents highlighted how crime against business in the area had escalated to alarming proportions.

The audience was told that the SA Police Service and the Metro Police were battling to find the human resources to deal with some of the issues raised in the meeting.

Pinetown had various economic development opportunities, including tourism, but these could be hindered by crime and the crumbling infrastructure and inadequate transport networks.

Vena Moodley, a senior superintendent with the eThekwini Metro, said more co-operation was needed between businesses and the police to ensure that illegal hawkers and vendors were incorporated into the mainstream economy in order to boost entrepreneurship and ease congestion.

He conceded that crime was also compounded by a lack of police visibility. Hawkers and car guards were not being legalised and the Durban CBD could no longer sustain a growing population, which had led to many companies moving out of the city centre.

“The infrastructure network system just fell apart,” he said.

Julian Carter, an independent consultant, told the meeting there was a need to engage with a small development business unit that looks at the interests of small businesses. He called for the re-establishment of Business Against Crime in the city, more business watches and a network to discuss issues around crime and business.

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