Bheki Cele ‘hell-bent’ on reducing crime as murder rate increases by 10 percent

Published Feb 17, 2023


Durban - Murder in South Africa continues to rise, with the latest quarterly crime statistics showing a 10% increase between the period of October and December.

National Police Minister Bheki Cele in delivering the statistics on Friday morning in Parliament said: “The calls by South Africans on the police, to decisively deal with crime are loud and they are clear.

“I stand here before you supported by the full contingent of the SAPS management, to say these calls by South Africans, are not falling on deaf ears.”

Cele said SAPS is, and will continue to intensify intelligence-led operations to take down individuals or organised criminals hell-bent on terrorising communities.

“While the crime figures we are releasing today don’t paint an overall positive picture of the crime situation in our country, they do, however, show that police are pushing back on criminality, through visible policing and disruptive operations.

“Plainly put, the more boots on the ground was not just a slogan, their impact has been felt and starting to make a difference in our communities,” he said.

Cele said investigations into mass shootings in the Eastern Cape, Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal have resulted in arrests in Bityi and Nomzamo Pietermaritzburg and KwaNobuhle.

“The political Task Team investigating murders in KZN continues to arrest hit men and those who order assassinations on their political rivals,” he said.

Police are also cleaning house and ridding the service of officers who choose to partner with rogue criminal elements, he said.

Cele confirmed that almost 50 police officers had been shown the door.

The police minister said out of the 7 555 people murdered in the three month period, 3 144 were killed with a firearm.

“In the past 12 months alone, police have permanently removed and destroyed 65 519 firearms,” Cele said.

In addition, rape and home invasions also showed an increase.