DA demand executive statement as KZN shuts down specialist drug units

Sizwe Mchunu, MPP

Leader of the DA in the KZN Legislature / DA KZN Spokesperson on Community Safety and Liaison

The Democratic Alliance calls on KwaZulu-Natal Community Safety MEC, Willies Mchunu, to present an executive statement to members of the provincial legislature in which we expect him to outline the reasons for the closure of successful specialist drug and tracking teams in the province and explain how his department will fight the war against crime without them.

According to a 12 August letter from KZN Police Commissioner, Mammonye Ngobeni, to cluster commanders in the province, drug squad teams are to be immediately disbanded and members returned to their stations.

The DA is outraged by this decision which has far-reaching implications.  It is clear that neither the MEC, nor the Commissioner fully grasp the devastating role that drugs play when it comes to crime.

There is a strong link between drug use and violent crime.  Drug use is on the increase at every level of society – urban areas and townships are full of young people who have succumbed to this scourge. Yet, rather than reinforcing already successful anti-drug units, the Commissioner – with the MEC’s backing – has seen fit to disband them.

As the DA we want to know how the MEC plans to address the fight against drugs without these units.  We expect an executive statement at the sitting scheduled for next week Thursday and will hold him to account on this decision.