KZN is worst for stock theft

2007-11-25 00:00

From a national total of 28 828 game, cattle, sheep and goats reported stolen from farms, from March 2006 until September 2007, 7 256 were stolen in KwaZulu-Natal.

KZN is followed by the Eastern Cape at 7 099. Gauteng reported the fewest animals stolen — 519.

Of these figures, 38% of stolen cattle, sheep and goats were recovered.

Democratic Alliance (DA) spokesman on rural safety, Rino King, said stock theft figures “reveal a security gap”.

“Only 10,62% of reported stock theft cases make it to a first court appearance. This is a decrease from last year’s 12,04%. The detection rate for stock theft for 2006 was 23,01%, a marginal decline from 2005’s rate of 24,39%. In addition to stock theft, incidents of violence against farming communities has increased by 24,8% from 2005/2006 to 2006/2007 [according to the SAPS 2006/2007 annual report],” King said.

The DA called on Defence Minister Mosiuoa Lekota to urgently reconsider the future of commando units and their possible role in supporting law and order in border and rural areas.

King added that “we are now paying dearly for the mistake of closing down commandos”.

Two weeks ago, The Witness reported the formation of a new provincial stock theft recovery task team.

The task team, which will have teams based around the province, is a specialised reactive unit that will step in as soon as stock have been stolen.

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