Crime: SA’s hoping for good news

2014-09-19 08:39

Will the much-anticipated crime statistics, to be released today, allow South Africans to breathe a sigh of relief or will they continue last year’s grim trend?

After a postponement earlier this week, Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko is expected to release the 2013-2014 figures in Pretoria today.

Exactly a year ago, the police released the 2012-2013 statistics and these painted a bleak picture of the levels of crime in the country.

The numbers showed that serious crimes such as murder, burglary, aggravated robbery and hijackings had gone up.

Nathi Mthethwa, who was the police minister at the time, revealed that the number of murders had increased by 0.6%. These were however, down by 16.6% over the previous four years, and 27.2% over the previous nine years.

He reported that there was a 6.5% increase in attempted murder. This was in contrast to the 16.8% decline over the previous four years and the 51.7% decline over the previous nine years.

At the time, one expert described the crime statistics as “the worst figures seen in 10 years”.

However, national police commissioner Riah Phiyega remained optimistic and said crime in South Africa was under control.

“The story of the South African Police Service is a story of assurance and confidence. When I look at the crime situation over a period of nine years, you all see that there is a general decline,” she said at the time.

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