DA challenges Minister Cele to visit SA’s under-resourced ‘rape capital’ police station

The statement follows an oversight inspection by the DA Shadow Minister of Police, Zakhele Mbhele MP, the DAWN KZN Chairperson, Shehana Kajee, and North Central Durban Constituency Head, Tim Brauteseth MP, to the Inanda Police Station in KwaZulu-Natal. Please find attached English and IsiZulu soundbites by Mr Mbhele and a English soundbite by Ms Kajee. Pictures can be found here, here and here

Today, the Democratic Alliance (DA) conducted an oversight inspection at the Inanda Police Station in KwaZulu-Natal. The visit follows the release of the 2016/17 police crime statistics, which revealed that the Inanda Police Station has the highest number of reported rape cases in the country.

The DA challenges Police Minister, Bheki Cele, to visit Inanda Police Station to ensure that the station is adequately resourced to fight the scourge of rape.

The station had 348 reported sexual offences cases, of which 309 were rape cases. The reported rape cases increased by 13.6% from the 2015/16 financial year.

These numbers are truly astonishing, and the figures could possibly be much worse given the fact that many rape victims do not report the crime, due to their fear of revictimisation at the hands of the police.

The local police have attributed the high rape rate in Inanda to alcohol abuse in the community. There are an estimated 177 licensed liquor spots in the area and an unknown number of unlicensed ones.

Furthermore, the station commander also confirmed that staff shortages, inaccessible roads and the lack of CCTV in the area make it impossible for the police to perform raids, patrol and timeously respond to call-outs.

From previous oversight inspections, the DA found that township police stations in general are under-resourced, under-equipped and police officers are often under-trained to effectively combat crime.

The low conviction rates for rape are also an area of concern for the Inanda police due to chronic delays in DNA results.

We found that the victim friendly rooms are in a fair condition. However, the rooms do not have beds as “it is not in line with procedure and policy”.

Victims of sexual violence deserve to have access to safe and dignified police stations, when they report the crime.

South Africans deserve a professional and well-resourced police force which is able to bring down the high rape rates and crime levels in the country.

The DA is committed to see police stations that are equipped with adequate resources and specialised training for police personnel in order to ensure that the victims of sexual violence are treated with dignity and that justice is served.

Minister Dlamini summoned to appear before SCOPA

The DA welcomes the decision by SCOPA to summon the Minister of Social Development, Bathabile Dlamini, to account for the SASSA grants crisis.
Following the farcical SASSA engagement with SCOPA on Tuesday, which the minister chose to ignore, the DA urged the SCOPA chair to call the Minister alone to appear before the committee on Tuesday 7 March.
SCOPA sent a letter to the minister late on Tuesday evening requesting her attendance and are now awaiting a response.
The DA calls on the Minister to summon the courage to appear before SCOPA, face the music and come clean on her plans, or lack thereof, to ensure that the 17 million poor and vulnerable South Africans who depend on social grants each month receive their grants on 1 April 2017.
Since this crisis became public knowledge, Minister Dlamini has evaded every opportunity for accountability. She has continuously prioritised campaigning for Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, rather than prioritising the millions of poor South Africans who depend on her to put their interests first.
If the Minister fails to accept this invitation, she will once again prove that the ANC does not care about the poor and vulnerable in our society.
Date: Tuesday 7 March 2017
Time: 09:00
Venue: V454; Fourth Floor, Old Assembly Building, Parliament