Hello, hello… police, is there anyone there?

Democratic Alliance leader John Steenhuisen is leading a march this morning to the Pretoria office of Police Minister Bheki Cele, who the party calls a failing minister unable to adequately protect the citizens of South Africa; asking for his dismissal and for more devolved policing power in order to help the under-resourced South African police force. The DA’s research showed that only 44% of the 270 SAPS stations around SA that the DA phoned answered their phones at all. Most worryingly, 40% of these 270 SAPS stations had faulty numbers or were not operable and the remaining 15% did not even answer their phones after 2 minutes of ringing. The province with the worst statistics is the Eastern Cape, with 18 out of the 30 stations not even having a working line and with 4 stations not answering their phone after 2 minutes. Meanwhile, Cele spends R600 million a year on catering and accommodation, while 2.2 million households have experienced housebreaking/burglary in the past 5 years. He’d much rather be seen providing photo ops of himself pouring liquor down drains, or telling rape victims they “were lucky only to be raped once”. This article was first published on Politicsweb.- Sandra Laurence

When 10111 just rings and rings – Andrew Whitfield

By Andrew Whitfield*

The DA’s research on how fast the South African Police Service (SAPS) answers its phones proves that Minister Cele doesn’t care about the safety of South Africans.

Shockingly, only 44% of the 270 SAPS stations around SA that the DA phoned answered their phones at all. Most worryingly, 40% of these 270 SAPS stations had faulty numbers or were not operable and the remaining 15% did not even answer their phones after 2 minutes of ringing. This means that desperate people in urgent need of their local police are being left to fend for themselves.

The province with the worst statistics is the Eastern Cape, with 18 out of the 30 stations not even having a working line and with 4 stations not answering their phone after 2 minutes.

This means that people in the Eastern Cape would not be able to get hold of 73% of these 30 SAPS stations in the event they were in imminent danger or were trying to report a crime.

The Western Cape had the best results, with 23 out of 30 stations answering their phones (77%).

Some other findings include:

  • Nine of the stations called appear on the top 10 list for murder by station. Six of them either did not answer their phones or did not have a working phone line (66.6%)
  • Nine of the stations called also appear on the top 10 list for rape by station. Six of them also either did not answer their phones or did not have a working phone line (66.6%)

SAPS is clearly broken and needs to be fixed. If SAPS members are not even able to answer the public’s calls, how can the police possibly fight crime effectively?

The latest crime statistics confirm how broken SAPS has become with GBV and children based crimes on the increase, together with other violent crimes.

Bheki Cele has shown time after time that he would rather pose for cameras pouring alcohol down drains than trying to fix the basic problems within the police service.

The DA is sick and tired of seeing the people of South Africa suffer under Cele’s lack of leadership. For this reason, the DA is marching to the office of Bheki Cele in Pretoria, with the clear message that enough is enough and that it is time for him to go.

  • Andrew Whitfield is the DA Shadow Minister of Police

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