Durban - Due to the concerns over the killings of its staff members while at municipal offices and facilities, eThekwini municipality has proposed to meet with its staff and labour union in an effort to find a solution to the problem.
“It is also worrying that we continue to have incidents where our employees lose their lives on duty,” said Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda in a statement recently.
“Plans are afoot to meet with our employees, more especially, eThekwini water and sanitation, trade unions and senior management to map a way forward about strengthening security in all our buildings,” he said.
At least three staff members in the water unit have been killed while on duty. One staff member was shot dead in his office in Springfield, a female staff member was shot dead in the water depot, and a male staff member was shot in the Folweni area whilst on stand-by. A union and opposition parties have raised concern about the level of security at municipal buildings and the city’s other facilities.
“We are also concerned about the ongoing killings of public representatives, including councillors and traditional leaders. Recently, we have witnessed a growing trend of mass killings, particularly in Umlazi,” he said.
Kaunda said the council was generally concerned about the levels of crime in and around eThekwini.
“We have not been able to shake off the evil tag of being the crime capital of the country. The latest crime statistics indicate that eThekwini Municipality contributes 50% of crime in the province. We recorded an increase in business robberies in the CBD, Umlazi, and KwaMashu and Inanda continue to lead in murder and sexual offences.”
He said beside the efforts made by the police to curb the crime levels, the city will also be implementing its own initiatives.
He said they would increase police visibility in the municipality.
“We are currently finalising the recruitment of more than 200 Metro Police officers to increase our crime prevention capacity. This is an ongoing recruitment programme, which will ensure that the city ultimately reaches its target of 5000 law enforcement officers.”