Wave of crime hits Cedara

2009-11-18 00:00

MORE than 20 computers, 17 car wheels and two horses were allegedly stolen at Cedara Agricultural College in a spate of crime incidents in recent months, but the KwaZulu-Natal Agriculture, Environmental Affairs and Rural Development Department says it knows nothing about them.

Staff members at the college have reported a rise in crime within the college in the past six months. Vehicles parked in the college grounds were found without tyres and placed on bricks and some vehicles were broken into and laptops were stolen.

Sources say about 17 wheels have been stolen from vehicles parked at the college, along with 20 computers.

The police have confirmed some of these incidents, but it is believed that some crimes were not reported.

According to SAPS spokesman, Senior Superintendent Henry Budhram, more than 15 cases of theft have been reported at Cedara since June. He said, “Three laptops were stolen from an open office in June; in October two laptops were stolen and another one was reported missing in September. A toolbox was stolen from a vehicle in August and two horses were stolen from the stables in September. In November four desk computers, a petrol card and car keys were stolen.”

He said a vehicle was stolen in April.

Sources have blamed the continuing thefts on the principal of the college. “He must be held responsible because he does not appear to be doing anything to control this rampant theft,” said one.

Cedara college falls under the provincial agriculture department and is right next to their headquarters.

Department spokeswoman Ncumisa Mafunda said the department has no knowledge and records of any horses nor wheels being stolen at Cedara.

However, she said, the department takes the issues of security very seriously, especially the safety of students and state assets.

“Security has just been beefed up by an addition of four security personnel, with a clear instruction to execute regular patrols,” Mafunda said.

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