Source: Eastern Cape Provincial Government
Title: SA: Mhlahlo: Eastern Cape Safety and liaison policy speech
Policy Speech: Department of Safety and Liaison, presented by Honourable Thobile Mhlahlo, MEC For Safety, Liaison, Roads and Transport in the Eastern Cape
"All to the front against crime"
Hods and managers of departments
People of the Eastern Cape
As it was declared in the pledge that we shall all strive together sparing neither strength nor courage, until the democratic changes set out in the Freedom Charter have been won.
Today we stand here collectively presenting the policy directive of the Department of Safety and Liaison having been able to create the necessary platform and conditions to realise the objectives set out in the Freedom Charter as it continues to instruct our actions in the state organs.
This year marks the 26th anniversary of the Maseru Massacre, which occurred on 09 December 1982, and the 23rd anniversary since the murder of the Cradock four in July 1985, the 23rd anniversary since the disappearance of the PEBCO three in May 1985, and the 24th anniversary of the Uitenhage Massacre of March 1984. It is the 22nd year since the East London Bus Boycott of July 1983.
During our policy priorities last year we presented our Battle Plan against Crime for Peace, we also assured the House that a solid foundation to advance our offensive against crime has been established in this province. Today, we shall derive our strategic direction moving from that background.
Nothing from the State of the Nation Address of the State President that a gave concern at the rate of crime and the fact that indications that things seemed to be turning from the worse, especially in respect to murder, robbery and violent crimes as they affect women and children, in particular, continue to haunt us in the criminal justice cluster.
Madam speaker, the network of criminals has grown in sophistication across our community boundaries. These include drug trafficking, human smuggling, abuse of young girls, and most violent crimes involving women and children. These crimes have been taken to the door of the members of the South African Police Service (SAPS).
Recently, we have observed murdering of SAPS members in our society. Of course, the question we need to ask ourselves is "who will be killed next? Who is behind these actions?"
The following SAPS members have been killed while on duty during this year:
- Inspector Vencencie
- Inspector Setie
- Inspector Bojana
- Inspector Mayekiso
- Sergeant Tsheme.
We derive our view from these acts that crime knows no colour, no status or position. Therefore, we need to fight it together for peace to prevail.
When the President was referring to the system of governance saying we should make the commitment that in the period ahead of us, we must live to the imperative - Business Unusual!
In our fight, we are calling all patriots led by revolutionary elements including forces of change to the front in this fight against crime.
Our commitment of developing a collaborative security community, which is founded and stilled on common democratic values and observance of human rights, still stands as an ongoing project.
We are further convinced that human security must be realised as a solid building block for the democratic state.
Issues of self development, cooperation with Community Police Forums (CPFs), collaboration of all state departments have to be prioritised as we advance our fight against crime.
Madam speaker, members of the Legislature our Provincial Growth and Development Plan (PGDP) remains central to service delivery and economic development in the Eastern Cape province, however, the realisation of peace and security remains that vehicle that underpins the PGDP in realising the vision of making the Eastern Cape a compelling place to live, work and invest in.
Since 2004 I am pleased to say that we as a department have done much to implement the commitments we made to this house. Particularly since March 2007 when I presented the department's policy speech in this house the following tasks were undertaken by the Department:
* As part of massive community mobilisation against crime a successful community police forum cluster board workshop was held and attended by representatives from all 195 police stations in the Eastern Cape.
* A cross border summit to deal with stock theft in Tsolo.
* Supported the 10th anniversary celebrations of reconciliation between cross border farmers of Lesotho and South Africa focusing on the Eastern Cape.
* Various youth-in sport tournaments were held.
* Implementation of PCPS action plans at 29 police stations.
* Hosting a private security workshop to enhance cooperation between SAPS, CPFs and the Private security industry and to strengthen relationships within the private security industry.
* Training and capacitation programmes for community policing forums (CPFs) focusing on their roles and responsibilities and the policy environment in which they operate.
* Roll out of community safety forums within 18 municipalities within the Eastern Cape.
* Safer school summit jointly with the Department of Education.
* Hosting and celebrating CPFs' 11 year existence in this province and South Africa as a whole.
* Strengthening relationships with correctional services.
* Review of the strategic plan for the Provincial community police board.
In our efforts to strengthen and consolidate support from tavern owners and patrons, a further workshop was held in Mthatha in partnership with the Department of Economic Development and Environmental Affairs. This workshop was similar to the one pioneered in Kwazakhele, Port Elizabeth.
Of course, we are hosting a similar workshop in East London next month.
As directed by the President in his State of the Nation Address, this year will see our crime fighting strategies and social crime prevention programmes live up to the imperative- "Business Unusual". Our "Business Unusual" approach is not about new structures or change in policies but rather speedy, efficient and effective implementation of policies so that the lives of our people should change for the better, sooner, rather than later. We are going to take the battle into the door of criminals in this province.
South African Police Service (SAPS)
Madam speaker, Honourable members as part of providing peace and stability in the Eastern Cape the South African Police Service is fundamental to achieving this.
In supporting our police service we have seen the strengthening of the police service through:
* The enlistment of 1 018 entry-level constables and 283 Public Service Act Personnel.
* The purchase of 951 vehicles at a total value of R115 million.
* Continuous improvement in SAPS infrastructure amounting to R65 066 817.00.
* This was spent on the upgrading of the following police stations such as Ugie, Elliot, Sterkspruit, Debe Nek, Mdantsane, Lusikisiki, Kei Bridge, Bedford, Grahamstown, Dutywa and Sterkstroom, upgrading of 29 Community Police Service Centres and the provision of 25 Victim Support Centres.
* As part of enhancing the capacity and skills of our police service members, this year saw 2 445 SAPS members trained in various courses like crime prevention, detective training, criminal record centre training as well as technical training.
* A total number of 976 reservists were also trained during this year.
* The total amount spend on training was R2 191 587.00.
The Support to Crimes Against Women and Children Programme in the Eastern Cape funded by the European Union (EU) has contributed indirectly to enhancing the Asgisa Programme through:
* Promoting an awareness of the provincial crime prevention strategy through 14 workshops throughout the Eastern Cape.
* In partnership with the Department of Social Development awareness on the one-stop model to promote victim support.
* Training of 446 SAPS members on specialised skills.
* Mobile victim friendly centres at 25 police stations in the Eastern Cape.
* Awarding of seven grants to non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to strengthen community police relations.
* Development of a custom built mobile police station focusing on service delivery to the deep rural areas of the Eastern Cape where the communities usually have to travel long distances to get help. This vehicle is equipped with a victim friendly facility and a community service centre.
This mobile centre is the first of its kind for South Africa. Total expenditure for the programme since inception is R33 165 989.00.
As the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup draws near our levels of crime, particularly contact crimes continue to depict a decrease in comparison with the same period in the preceding year, however the target of -7 percent remains a challenge. Crime types like murder, rape, aggravated robbery, serious assault are showing a consistent decrease, however attempted murder reflects an increase. Property related crime like burglary residential, theft of motor vehicles and theft out of motor vehicle are showing consistent decreases however burglary of business premises still remains a challenge. To sustain the decrease in contact and property crimes, and deal with crime reduction strategies continuously calls for law enforcement agencies to work together in an integrated manner.
Through the partnerships and coordination with the law enforcement agencies the following successes were achieved:
* 167 622 priority crime arrests.
* 77 217 arrests for other crimes.
* 134 280 stop and search operations.
* 1 524 vehicles recovered.
In ensuring peace and stability in our communities and a safer society, firearms will remain a priority for the South African Police Service. We have seen 1 870 firearms confiscated thus far and 383 handed in voluntarily. We all must take responsibility to ensure that we contribute to a "weapon-free society".
This house would recall that during February 2007 the process of restructuring within SAPS was completed. This restructuring was aimed at strengthening service delivery to the communities through the clustering of police stations in the province. Of a total 1 798 members affected by the restructuring, 1 759 were deployed to police stations while 39 were deployed to the Provincial Commissioner's office. Resources from area offices particularly motor vehicles were distributed to various police stations. As part of strengthening the investigative capacity at police stations specialised skills from, FCS and ACCU members have been placed at police stations. As part of our oversight function, this year we will do an impact assessment of the restructuring of SAPS to test its effectiveness of improved service delivery to the people of the Eastern Cape.
Madam speaker in responding to our mandate of "Business Unusual" we will be taking responsibility for three of the 24 APEX responsibilities which is namely:
* Implement special crime combating and security initiatives.
* Partnerships and communication of fighting crime.
* Reduce the number of cases pending trial.
To achieve the above:
* This year will see a further increase of at least 10 percent in the police budget for motor vehicles.
* Recruitment of approximately 1 444 members targeting entry level constables and Public Service Act personnel.
* An increase of 6 percent in the police training budget.
* Infrastructure improvements focusing on major upgrades will take place at Bethelsdorp, Ndevana, Whittlesea and Alice police stations to an amount of R40 million. There are capital projects, which will take place at Lusikisiki, Mbizana, Debe Nek police stations and a new police station will be built at Joza Township in Grahamstown.
Madam speaker since the dawn of our democracy in 1994 has seen the growth of the police service personnel from 15 259 to 19 317 as at the end of January 2008. As part of enhancing police visibility within our communities we have also seen a growth of more than 100 percent in the police budget focusing on operations and support functions excluding salaries.
Strengthening civilian oversight over SAPS
Despite remarkable strides to transform the police service we are still challenged with poor service delivery from SAPS to some of our communities, resource allocation in favour of advantaged communities and pockets of police management who still resist to change to accepting this new democratic dispensation.
This year will see the strengthening of our civilian oversight function of SAPS in the fight against crime to ensure a truly transformed police service focusing on embracing Bathole Pele and upholding its responsibilities as enshrined in the constitution. To achieve this we will:
* Do service delivery evaluations at 60 police stations.
* Engage SAPS on key transformation policies to ensure that the achievement of equity, resource allocation, employer wellness, procurement and discipline so as to improve service delivery to the people of the Eastern Cape.
* Promote closer working relationships between SAPS and the communities to enhance service delivery.
Our oversight work and reports will translate into meaningful change where the people particularly the disadvantaged and the poor in rural communities benefit. We will do this through regularised meetings with the provincial SAPS Management.
Total budget: R40,9 million
Financial management: R8,6 million
It has been proven that no organisation can be effective without proper measures and controls in place. Let me proudly once again pronounce that the department has for the fourth time in a row received an unqualified audit opinion. We will this year again be attempting to maintain our record of an unqualified audit opinion. We have ensured that the departmental budget framework address the PGDP's strategic objectives. Our 2008/09 financial year will see the alignment of funds for departmental specific priorities and create project codes on the system to monitor expenditure trends effectively. We will continue to intensify awareness campaigns on the anti-corruption strategy. Departmental delegations have been completed and are now in the process of implementation.
Corporate services: R13,4 million
Our organogram approved in 2003 is now 100 percent fully staffed. In realising the growth of the department and its responsibility of social mobilisation against crime and oversight of the police service I am pleased to announce that we have developed a new organogram. A key facet of this new organogram is that districts will be more capacitated and we will be launching a division of community safety with effect from the 1st April 2008. This organogram has been approved by me and it will await final approval by the Department of Public Service Administration and we will see a staff compliment of over 400 personnel. The upgrading process of the posts of the District managers from Assistant director to Deputy director have begun. This financial year, these posts will be elevated to the Deputy director level.
As part of recognising the importance of service delivery to our communities in the Eastern Cape, the performance management and development system is the most important tool to assess staff performance hence the necessary assessments are done as required and the qualifying employees appropriately rewarded.
Community Safety: R18,8 million
Madam speaker we all as citizens of the province and country in general must make every effort to tackle the scourge of crime drawing on the resources and capacity of all sectors of our society and community at large. As a nation we already made great strides to limit the movement of criminals to undermine our society and violate the right of our people to safety and security.
During the course of 2008/09 we will sharpen our anti-crime campaigns. We will consolidate on work already done to mobilise our communities more effectively to beat crime. This year will see the reviving of the culture of mass mobilisation and active participation with civil society, community based organisations and all other formations to form a broad front against crime.
We will strengthen our work with religious formations and traditional leadership throughout the province to intensify the fight against crime. Moral regeneration programmes will be a key vehicle to the reduction of crime. As part of strengthening the social needs cluster the key high impact priority projects relating to the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup and Community Mobilisation Against Crime will underpin our crime prevention interventions during this financial year. This year we also anchored the department further by constructive participation in the social needs cluster thus positioning and strengthening crime prevention programmes and taking provincial government forward in the fight against crime in an integrated manner to provide sustainable, peaceful and prosperous communities.
The cluster approach within government has made important strides in working in a more integrated and collective fashion. Realising the importance of peace and stability to the success of the PGDP, this year will see the establishment of the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster (JCPS). This cluster will coordinate and strengthen relationships between all law enforcement agencies in the province and further promote cooperative governance in the fight against crime. The following departments will constitute the cluster:
Department of Safety and Liaison, Department of Social Development, Department of Health, Department of Education, Department of Transport, Department of Economic Development, Independent Complaints Directorate, East Cape Youth Commission, Department of Justice and Constitutional Development, National Prosecuting Authority, Magistracy, Home Affairs, Correctional Services and heads of safety and security from the district municipalities and the metro.
One of the immediate tasks which this cluster will address will be the alignment of magisterial districts within municipal boundaries.
Community courts still remain a priority and a challenge for the province. We will be reviewing our strategy and plans for the community court in the Nelson Mandela Metro and I am glad to pronounce that the proclamation for the community court in Mthatha has been finalised.
During safety and security month we saw the reactivation of street committees. We will be once again calling upon our communities to establish street committees in making our neighbourhoods safer places and with regard to rural areas the establishment of village committees. This introductory move was made to consolidate street committees under CPFs. As a department we will ensure that these structures are adequately capacitated and growth of this programme.
Our provincial crime prevention strategy remains at the forefront of our multi-agency collaboration against crime. This year we have ring fenced an amount of R3,9 million for the provincial crime prevention strategy. Our crime prevention strategy will be underpinned by:
* Strong partnerships between government, civil society, CPFs and communities.
* Supporting the enhancement of the criminal justice system.
* Massive community mobilisation in crime prevention programmes.
* Strengthening our oversight over SAPS.
* Support provincial cabinet initiated projects like the Ugie/Maclear corridor, Mbizana and Ikwezi thus promoting cooperation between all three spheres of government.
All our programmes will see a partnership between the different spheres of government and community police forums with the aim of a reduction of contact crimes and increased visibility of SAPS. We will continue with our capacitation and training programme of CPFs so that they continue to be the bedrock of our citizens in the fight against crime in our communities.
Later on during this month will see a study tour being undertaken by the department involving all CPF structures, department officials, senior SAPS management and office of the Premier in the Eastern Cape to the Western Cape. This study tour is intended to enhance and promote an integrated collaboration approach to crime prevention. Delegates will be meeting with their counter parts in the Western Cape and visiting crime prevention projects. A highlight of this tour will be a visit to Robin Island.
We have already begun the establishment of community safety forums within 18 municipalities within the Eastern Cape. This year we will provide "hands-on support" to these municipalities where community safety forums have been established. The success of community safety forums is the central coordinating function played by local municipalities. We will provide "hand-on support" local municipalities through active participation on inter-governmental forums within the different municipalities.
During the 2007/08 financial year together with the Department of Education we hosted a successful safer school summit. We will strengthen our approach to implementing the resolutions of this summit and further ensure model schools develop in the Eastern Cape that achieves the vision outlined in the Freedom Charter of "The Doors of Learning Shall Be Opened". As part of enhancing our multi-agency collaboration approach against crime together with the Department of Economic Development and Environmental Affairs will see the development and implementation of a provincial tourism safety and security strategy. This strategy will focus on fast tracking court systems, victim support and crime prevention.
During November 2007 the department held a provincial 2010 safety and security summit. This summit attracted attention from sectors and role players throughout South Africa. A key deliverable of this Summit has been the development of a draft 2010 provincial safety and security plan. This plan will form the basis of the blue print for the provincial 2010 plan. This summit has since led to the FIFA organising committee directing that all Provinces host provincial 2010 safety and security summit's similar to the one hosted by the Eastern Cape province. As part of ensuring the government's guarantees to FIFA are achieved we will again host a workshop to evaluate our readiness for 2010. We will also continue to support and participate in the provincial coordinating committee responsible for the overall coordination of 2010 in the Eastern Cape.
Recognising the importance of effective public private partnerships in crime prevention the department held a successful workshop with the private security industry, to define its role in the 2010 FIFA World Cup and enhance partnerships between the private security industry, SAPS and community police forums. The last few years have seen the mushrooming of private security companies, of which some are guilty of non-compliance with the laws of the country, including labour legislation resulting in mal-practices such as the exploitation of workers.
To deal with this we will strengthen the legislative and regulatory framework within which the private security companies operate.
We will further propose that the powers of the secretariat for Safety and Security be extended to allow them to monitor the activities of the private security companies in conjunction with the private security industry regulatory authority.
Madam speaker and Honourable members in about a year's time our people will once again participate in the general democratic elections. As in the past these elections bring about challenges for our law enforcement agencies.
We can assure you, however, that preparations for safe, free and fair elections have already begun.
We will do our best to live up to these commitments of facilitating peace and stability in our communities, but the success will remain upon all of us to join hands in massive community mobilisation against crime towards 2010 and beyond. Our tasks for 2008 are to consolidate and build on the work already done to mobilise our communities more effectively in our crime prevention programmes to beat crime.
Madam speaker as I present our programme of action let me conclude that "Our victories are based on what we are doing in action".
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