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Police Minister Bheki Cele satisfied with low crime rates in the King Cetshwayo District

Police Minister Bheki Cele conducted a walkabout at the Broadwalk Mall. He was accompanied by provincial police commissioner, Lieutenant-General Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi (right). Picture: Supplied

Police Minister Bheki Cele conducted a walkabout at the Broadwalk Mall. He was accompanied by provincial police commissioner, Lieutenant-General Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi (right). Picture: Supplied

Published Dec 30, 2021

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DURBAN – Police Minister Bheki Cele revealed that he was satisfied with the decreased crime levels in Richards Bay and the entire King Cetshwayo District.

“I must say, one is quite comfortable, and is quite happy with the situation of the crime around King Cetshwayo District, which has 12 police stations. We met with the district management and they raised issues, amongst them the shortage of police,” Cele said.

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He spoke while assessing the operations of the South African Police Service in Richards Bay ahead of New Year’s Eve, as part of the Safer Festive Season Inspection Tour.

He also conducted a walk-about at places of leisure in the area, where scores of holiday-makers are expected to converge ahead of end of the year celebrations.

“We came here at the beach to see how people are doing during this festive season. Our festive season starts in October and continues until this day (December 29), where we look at the comparison between this year and the previous one, in terms of crime,” Cele said.

Cele also met with the Community Policing Forum, which was working closely with the police, as well as the people around town.

Police Minister Bheki Cele during his safer festive season inspection tour in Richards Bay. Picture: SAPS

“We met the management of the Broadwalk Mall, who told us they were happy with the situation concerning the crime rate at the moment. We also met with business people and also went to the taxi rank.

“We believe that we are much better this year when it comes to the crime situation, than the previous year. We hope people keep it that way,” he said.

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Cele said some shoppers questioned why alcohol was still on sale during the festive season.

“We told them we will not ban alcohol, but we want people to behave, rather than restricting them,” Cele said.

He added that it was unfortunate that there was a high level of road crashes, which he attributed to the combination of alcohol and bad weather.

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“We believe that besides the economic situation and Covid-19, people are behaving and life is better,” he said.

He commended the national and provincial police commissioners for calling everybody “out of the woods.”

“There is better police visibility, there are better responses, but more than anything, we have tried to involve communities as much as we can and it is very helpful,” Cele said.

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Police Minister Bheki Cele also visited a taxi rank in Richards Bay to ensure safety. Picture: SAPS

Meanwhile, uMhlathuze Municipality recently announced that it was ready to welcome throngs of visitors flocking to its shores during this festive season.

The city said it had devised a solid multi-pronged festive season safety and security strategy that was endorsed by Mayor Xolani Ngwezi and further supported by councillors.

uMhlathuze spokesperson Mdu Ncalane said: “The strategy involves all law enforcement agencies such as City of uMhlathuze Security and Public Safety Unit, Traffic Management Unit and external agencies such as a number of units within the SAPS, provincial Road Traffic Inspectorate, Sars, SANDF to ensure a total safe City.”

Mayor Ngwezi said: “We have committed to monitoring this plan, until towards the end of January. All councillors along the coast from Port Dunford to Mzingazi will monitor all planned activities, while we have agreed to deploy all necessary resources within our means to ensure that visitors are having responsible fun with their families.”

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