Western Cape Government declares dispute with Cele over police resources

2019-04-28 21:55
The DA's candidate for the Western Cape premier Alan Winde. (Jan Gerber/News24)

The DA's candidate for the Western Cape premier Alan Winde. (Jan Gerber/News24)

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The Western Cape Government has declared a formal dispute with Minister of Police Bheki Cele, accusing him of ignoring the provinces policing needs.

In a statement on Sunday, Community safety MEC Alan Winde in the province said the formal intergovernmental dispute was declared as a result of ignoring the urgent policing needs and priorities, which was brought to his attention six months ago.

"He has failed to respond to our urgent requests, even after a follow-up letter in December, and hand delivering the letter to President Ramaphosa in person in Parliament in February," Winde said.

"The Minister of Police is obliged by the Constitution to consult and take account of the specific needs of our province when determining policy. By ignoring these needs and priorities, Minister Cele is violating the Constitution."

Winde said that the Western Cape urgently needs more police officers, adding that the ANC government has given the DA led province fewer resources to fight crime when compared to other provinces.

"Western Cape police is dramatically under resourced compared to other provinces: while one officer must protect 375 people on average nationally, in the Western Cape, the ratio is 1:509."

"The Western Cape needs urgent additional personnel to enable the Western Cape Provincial Commissioner to take steps to address gang violence and the appalling murder rate, as well as to protect learners and schools, public transport and state infrastructure such as ambulances," he added.

Winde also said that the Western Cape offered the South African Police Services R5 million to pay for police reservists to be deployed in the province as well as offered provincial government volunteers to take on administrative duties at police stations, so that more police officers are freed up to fight crime on patrol. 

"But the Minister has ignored us, and has not responded to our province’s urgent policing needs and priorities and did not respond to these offers."

"When we ask for more police officers, the ANC government looks away, and when we ask for the army to be sent in to defeat gangs, the ANC government says no. We are sick of the national government refusing to hear our cry for help."

Read more on:    saps  |  da  |  bheki cele  |  alan winde  |  cape town  |  service delivery  |  crime
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