11 people murdered daily

2019-09-18 06:01
Die misdaadtoneel by die Le Bon-bakkery in Port Elizabeth waar konst. Dwane Kemp van die polisie se blitspatrollie vroeër vanjaar geskiet is. Foto: Lulama Zenzile

Die misdaadtoneel by die Le Bon-bakkery in Port Elizabeth waar konst. Dwane Kemp van die polisie se blitspatrollie vroeër vanjaar geskiet is. Foto: Lulama Zenzile

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CHRISTIAN Martin, a champion for the rights of residents in Port Elizabeth’s gang-ravaged areas, believes these statistics are wrong.

He said there were at least 195 gang-related murders in Port Elizabeth alone.

In the past financial year, 11 police officers were killed in the Eastern Cape.

Constable Dwane Kemp of Port Elizabeth’s flying squad was one of them.

His wife, Candice, who was pregnant with their son at the time of his death, said she believed police could do more to protect their officers, especially in terms of a better uniform.

“For example, my husband was very tall (1.8m) and he was shot in the stomach, just below his bullet-proof jacket, by his left main artery,” Kemp said.

SEXUAL CRIMES

Sexual offences increased 4.6% nationwide. In the Eastern Cape, however, the increase was much higher, at 7.9%.

Rape increased 3.9% nationwide and 7.1% in the province.

A total of 7 305 rape cases were reported in the Eastern Cape during the past financial year - about 20 per day.

Lusikisiki (an increase of 46.6%) is the area where the second most rapes occurred in the country, with Mthatha (down 8.1%) in seventh place.

STOCK THEFT

The Eastern Cape is, by far, the province with the most incidents of stock theft and, according to the latest statistics, this has increased by 8.3% over the past financial year.

Bityi, Sulenkama and Maluti are the top three areas in South Africa in terms of stock theft.

Doug Stern, chairperson of Agri Eastern Cape, said Eastern Cape farmers were known not to report cattle theft, mainly because they had lost confidence in the police’s ability to resolve matters.

According to Stern, stock theft and the accompanying drought have the potential to cut farmers financially.

“Livestock theft is a health concern.

“Without financial assistance from the state, due to the drought, things are so much worse.

“It is our livelihood that is being taken away,” Stern said.

CASH-IN-TRANSIT ROBBERIES

Gauteng had the majority of cash-in-transit robbery incidents (62) reported, while 46 incidents occurred in the Eastern Cape.

This is double the number reported in the previous financial year and the most since 2011.

Cash Connect’s chief operating officer, Mark Templemore-Walters, attributed the increase in cash-in-transit robberies in the province to opportunistic criminals seeking a softer target due to pressure in other provinces.

“The police usually focus on and prioritise their resources and manpower in problem areas such as in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.

“When the pressure becomes too much for a criminal, he simply shifts away and seeks an easier target,” Templemore-Walters said.

RURAL SAFETY

In the 2018-’19 financial year, there were 47 murders in 41 incidents on farms and smallholdings across the country.

According to the civil rights organisation AfriForum’s statistics, there were 32 farm attacks in the Eastern Cape for the 2018 calendar year, of which three were murders.

Johandré van Zyl, AfriForum’s chief of security for the southern region, says the general crime situation indicates that crime in the province is out of control.

“Murders, as well as attempted murder, are the highest in 10 years.

“The community cannot rely solely on the state to ensure their safety,” Van Zyl said.

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