SAPS engages with the community on social crime prevention in Maletswai

Today members of the Maletswai community and various government departments converged at the Greenslade Community Hall to discuss pertinent crime concerns and strategies to combat the rampant criminal acts such as rape, domestic violence, stock theft, trading of illicit drugs, and drug abuse, robbery, corruption and fraud, occurring in the Maletswai township and the Aliwal North Cluster ahead of the festive season. The Eastern Cape Department of Safety and Liaison Joe Gqabi District Office, in partnership with the South African Police Services (SAPS), Maletswai Community Policing Forum (CPF), Department of Justice, and Joe Gqabi District Department of Social Development hosted the social crime prevention awareness campaign in efforts to inform and educate the community on the various services offered by these departments and structures.

As part of the point of departure for the engagement, Captain Matetelane from the Aliwal North Cluster Office gave the current contact crime statistic overview of the Cluster compared to that of January to October 2018, which revealed a 44% decrease on rape cases, and a decrease of 7.2 % on assault GBH (grievous bodily harm) cases, while drug related crimes spiked to an increase of 76.2 %. The statistic overview allayed many crucial concerns of the community expressed during the engagements, while they agreed that illicit drugs are the major contribution to the crime experienced in the township.

Responding as to how the Maletswai Station has countered the crime in the area, Lieutenant Colonel Moloisane stated that he responded to curbing the crime that occurs during the night by ensuring high visibility and assigned the crime prevention unit to 6pm – 6am shift schedule, which used to be from 15:00 – 22:00.

He also enlightened the community on the various specialised units in the SAPS, where the Commercial Crimes, Stock Theft unit, Detectives, FCS, and others are assigned with their respective expertise to investigate crime to ensure successful convictions in court.

Ms Mathanzima from the Department of Justice also educated the community on the distinction of the NPA and Justice, what their respective roles entail. She explained interdepartmental relationship with the SAPS, NPA, and Social Development, and how their processes ensure that justice is afforded to members of the community.

The members of the community were very receptive to the informative social crime awareness campaign, and admitted that their knowledge on services rendered by the various departments and their rights to access these services – was broadened. They further requested that the SAPS avail the specialised units to inform and empower the community on services they offer.

Mr Mbane (Department of Safety and Liaison) and Mr Somi (Maletswai CPF Chairperson) encouraged members of the community work in unison with the SAPS in fighting the drug and alcohol problem in the Maletswai Township. Let’s hold hands and work together with the police and not be complacent [with crime]. We must take a stand against crime, ended Mr Somi.

Source: South African Police Service