Bobby Stevenson (MPL),
Shadow MEC for Safety and Security:
Truck drivers and motorists using the R72 coastal road in the Keiskamma cuttings are the victims of highway robbers.
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The modern day highway robbery that is taking place in the Keiskamma cuttings on the R72 coastal road must be stamped out. The DA calls for the re-instatement of a temporary police station in the vicinity of these cuttings so the culprits can be nailed and jailed.
It is clear from a legislature reply from Safety and Liaison MEC Weziwe Tikana that a massive problem exists.
This extortion, where trucking companies are forced to pay a security levy to transport their goods through the cuttings amounts to an additional tax because the SAPS cannot eradicate the problem.
This new method of crime has also spread to stop-goes and I have personally been in touch with the provincial commissioner in regard to other incidents. These new modern-day highwaymen are prying on vulnerable motorists and truckers, striking fear into their hearts!
Policing strategies have got to adapt to this new form of crime and resources must be deployed accordingly. Safety on our province’s roads is a priority.
Unless this is stopped it will start to strangle the lifeblood of our economy which is the free movement of goods and tourists along our province’s roads.
The Eastern Cape ranked second last as a destination for foreign tourists. Domestic arrivals in the Eastern Cape have declined from 5.71 million visitors in 2009 to 2.1 million in 20013. This is 3.6 million less visitors.
I will now be asking follow up questions to the MEC as to whether or not a temporary police station will be erected in the vicinity in the light of the terror that motorists and truckers are being subjected to.
The high crime rate in this province negatively impacts on the environment for investment and economic growth. Unless we can stamp out crime jobs will continue to decline.