Business breakfast focuses on crime

2017-11-22 06:02
PHOTO: SourcedKZN MEC for Community Safety and Liaison Mxolisi Kaunda.

PHOTO: SourcedKZN MEC for Community Safety and Liaison Mxolisi Kaunda.

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THE majority of business crimes are reported at the Pietermaritzburg, Alexandra­ and Plessislaer police stations­.

This is according to uMgungundlovu South Cluster Commander, Major-General Phumelele Makoba who revealed this during a business breakfast hosted by the KZN Department of Community Safety last Thursday at the Pietermaritzburg City Hall.

Statistics presented by Makoba at the breakfast:

• At the Plessislaer Police Station reported were 91 cases of business burglaries, 64 business robberies and 75 cases of shoplifting.

• At the Pietermaritzburg Police Station reported were 231 cases of business burglaries, 27 cases of business robberies and 296 cases of shoplifting.

• At the Alexandra Police Station reported were 48 cases of business burglaries and 22 cases of business robberies.

• At the Taylors Halt Police Station reported were 23 cases of business robberies.

Another concern raised at the breakfast is the spike in stock theft.

Communities throughout the district said failure to keep in custody and convict stock thieves is a contributing factor to the increase of the crime.

Chairperson of the KZN Community Crime Prevention Association, Tallman Zuma­ said Impendle and Taylors Halt are the most affected areas for stock theft.

He said another problem arises when an agreement is reached with the accused after they have admitted to the theft and agree to pay for the stolen stock.

“This makes the criminals steal more stock so they can pay for the ones they are meant to pay for,” Zuma said.

He said stock owners do not adequately look after their animals such as cows, which are reported to the police as a theft once they have gone missing, but are found days later. This, he said, contributes to the rise in stock theft statistics.

North Cluster - Impendle falls in this area - Commander, Major-General Bongi Sithole said 82 cases of stock theft were wrongfully reported from April to October.

She said cross-border theft is a huge problem in Impendle.

Sithole urged stock owners to brand their animals.

Another issue raised at the breakfast was the high prevalence of shebeens in communities.

Sithole said police are only authorised to confiscate liquor sold at a shebeen, however, she said shebeens will be identified and dealt with by the end of the festive season.

Nhlakanipho Msimango from the KZN Liquor Board said it is important that people know the distinction between a tavern and a shebeen.

A tavern operates with a legal licence between 8am and 12pm, a shebeen operates illegally, she said.

Breakfast guests said another worry is that places where drugs are being sold are known to the community, but nothing is done to rid communities of them.

It was also pointed out that the difficulty­ in getting rid of whoonga addicts­ is because whoonga is a concoction of-over-the counter medication and substances, therefore it is not illegal, meaning sellers and drug users cannot be prosecuted.

KZN MEC for Community Safety and Liaison, Mxolisi Kaunda also attended the breakfast.

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