DA Gauteng Provincial Leader & Deputy Spokesperson for Community Safety
Criminals still hold the people of Gauteng – the crime capital of South Africa – to ransom, this according to the 2012 Victims of Crime Survey released by Statistics SA today.
The fear of crime in Gauteng prevents people from leading happy, fulfilled and productive lives, denying them not only economic opportunities, but also the enjoyment of public spaces.
According to the survey a significant percentage of Gauteng households are prevented from engaging in daily recreational activities as a result of crime in their area. This includes 42.8% who are too scared to go to open spaces or parks, 30.6% who refuse their children the opportunity to play outside in their area, and 23.7% whose children cannot walk to school.
Crime in Gauteng also severely impacts on the commercial activities of the people in the province, with 9% prevented from investing in / starting a home business; 12.4% refusing to use public transport; and 16% refusing to walk to work or town due to crime.
The legislature’s Community Safety Portfolio Committee must thoroughly debate the findings of the survey. I will also request that Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko and Provincial Police Commissioner Mzwandile Petros brief the committee on the survey findings.
The survey offers invaluable insight into the perceptions and experiences of the people of the province, and should be incorporated into the strategy to combat crime in Gauteng.
It is unacceptable that crime and criminal elements in Gauteng are denying law-abiding citizens the opportunity to reap the economic benefits of the province and to enjoy its outdoors and recreational offering.
We cannot afford a situation in which South Africa’s economic heartland is held ransom by criminals. The inhabitants and businesses of Gauteng must not be left to the mercy of criminals.