Mpumalanga Crime statistics: Reduction welcomed, murder concerning

Jane Sithole MPL

Spokesperson – Community Safety and Security

The DA in Mpumalanga welcomes the recent release of the latest crime statistics. We note the decrease in the majority of crime categories and would like to thank the Provincial Police Commissioner Lieutenant General Thulani Ntobela and his team for their massive efforts, which have clearly paid dividends.

The DA however is rather concerned by the increases in Murder, Attempted Murder and Truck Hijacking which have been reported to have gone up by 16.4%, 5.8% and 37.8% respectively.

The massive increase in Truck Hijacking is a sign of deteriorating socio-economic conditions that have forced people into a life of crime. The DA calls on government to properly implement programmes that seek to address these issues as well as create jobs, so that citizens can contribute to the local economy instead of hampering its growth.

The DA notes the response by MEC of Community Safety, Security and Liaison Vusi Shongwe that a factor that lead to the increase in murders is partly due to the re-categorisation of Traditional Circumcision related deaths into the Murder category. However, the MEC needs to disclose how many of these murders are circumcision related, because according to these stats, at least 2 people are killed every day in the province.

Looking at the absolute values of Murder and Attempted Murder, with the 2011 population estimates, it’s scary to think that there is a 1 in 2553 chances that someone will attempt to murder you in the province, with a 1 in 4987 chances that the individual will succeed in murdering you.

With these alarming factors in mind, the DA once again calls on government to please release these statistics on a monthly basis. This will ensure that citizens become aware when a type of crime is on the rise in their community, and as such are able to react in a timely manner, with the relevant programmes in conjunction with the police so as to ensure the safety of all.