Cape Town - The Democratic Alliance has demanded that police resources in the Western Cape be stepped up and brought into line with the average police-to-residents ratio in the rest of the country.
In a memorandum handed to the South African Police Service (SAPS) on Saturday, the DA highlighted the plight of communities living in constant fear due to the shortage of police and police resources in their areas, DA Western Cape leader Bonginkosi Madikizela said.
"While police bosses have talked tough in the aftermath of brutal killings of hundreds of people on the Cape Flats over the past months very little has come of any of their promises," he said.
The memorandum handed to the station commander at the Philippi East police station on Saturday after a DA march in the area for safer communities, called on the national police commissioner to urgently capacitate the SAPS in the province.
The memorandum made eight demands that should be implemented as a matter of urgency:
- Police stations in the Western Cape should enjoy the same average police deployment ratio of one police officer to 380 residents. Police stations in the 10 most violent areas in Cape Town had deployment ratios as low as one officer for every 880 residents;
- The SAPS should move closer to international best practise and achieve a deployment ratio of one officer to 220 residents at the 10 most violent police stations over the next five years;
- All detective vacancies in the Western Cape should be filled;
- 8300 additional detectives should be employed across South Africa;
- All administrative vacancies in the Western Cape should be filled;
- The number of police officers in South Africa should be increased to 250,000 (Cape Town currently had 22,000);
- The specialised police station, as promised by President Jacob Zuma in his state-of-the-nation debate reply in Parliament this year should be introduced; and
- Specialised police units dealing with gangs and organised crime should be reinstated.
"While the DA in the Western Cape does its best to fight crime in our communities with local initiatives we have no control over the SAPS. This is because policing falls under the ANC national government. Police Minister Fikile Mbalula must act now.
"While the national government and the SAPS are failing in the fight against crime in the Western Cape, the DA will continue to do everything in our power to ensure that our residents live in safe, non-violent communities," Madikizela said.