Crime stats: Cele’s head must roll

Please find attached English and Afrikaans soundbites by Okkie Terblanche MP.

The latest crime statistics are further evidence in a long list of incidents of incompetence that justify why the Minister of Police, Bheki Cele, must be fired

Shocking statistics recorded by the South African Police Service (SAPS) for the third quarter of the 2021/2022 financial year reveal an 8.9% increase in murder and a 3.5% increase in attempted murder when compared to the previous year. Alarmingly, there was an 11.3% increase in murder from the second quarter of 2021/22 to now.

This means that almost 75 people were murdered every day in the third quarter.

Attempted murder also increased from the second to third quarter by 9.46%.

None of this bodes well for South Africans who continue to become ever more vulnerable.

While Minister Cele and National Police Commissioner General Khehla Sitole continue to clash, women and children remain under siege. The murder rate against women increased by 4.2% year on year and attempted murder by 7.2%. The murder rate against children increased by 22.6% quarter to quarter. Attempted murder of children increased 30% year on year and 39.2% quarter on quarter.

From October to December 2021, 11 315 rapes were reported, while 902 women were murdered, 1 204 were nearly killed, and 15 692 were assaulted. That same period saw 352 child murders, 394 attempted murders, and 2 048 children were assaulted.

The irrational solution from the Minister? Putting fewer boots on the ground. The latest available police to population ratio from the 2020/21 annual report states that there is only one police officer for every 413 civilians. The ratio has dropped year by year from 1:358 in 2014/15 to 1:375 in 2017/18 and there seems to be no political will to stop this worrying trend.

In fact, the police budget is set to be cut by R11 billion over the next three years. While SAPS and South Africans suffer, criminals thrive.

The crime stats released today again reinforces the urgency of the motion of no confidence DA Leader, John Steenhuisen, tabled against the cabinet earlier this week. Minister Cele and his colleagues in the Executive are incapable and incompetent to run an effective government.

As the July unrests have clearly shown, for all his bluster, Minister Cele has no bite. He is unwilling and more importantly, unable to turn SAPS around. His impotency has cost South Africans their lives and allowed crime to flourish.

The DA has no confidence in Minister Cele. South Africans have lost all confidence in him. It is time for President Cyril Ramaphosa to cut this dead wood from his cabinet.