Cape Town. 130725. Dan Plato voicing a strong opinion over the youth being marginuilsed in Cape Town in Parliament today. Reporter Cobus Coetzee. Picture COURTNEY AFRICA

Cape Town - Western Cape Community Safety MEC Dan Plato has extended a hand of friendship to newly appointed national Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko, urging closer co-operation between the two spheres of government.

In a congratulatory letter to Nhleko, Plato said he was looking forward to working with the new minister to make the Western Cape a safer place.

“The experience gained during Mr Nhleko’s term as head of the Specialised Anti-Corruption Unit at the Department of Public Service and Administration will hopefully set him in good stead to deal with police corruption and also see the value of specialised units in the police service,” Plato said.

Plato stopped short of saying he was happy to see the back of former minister Nathi Mthethwa.

“Mr Mthethwa was not open to any of the requests made by this provincial government for policing support, and at the same time, blocked many of our co-operative efforts to increase the safety of our communities,” he said

The MEC said President Jacob Zuma’s demotion of Mthethwa was a clear indication that he was not happy with the negative and hostile approach that his ministry adopted when it came to working with others.

Plato added that while he looked forward to assisting Nhleko wherever possible, he had always maintained that it was not only the police’s role to ensure the safety of citizens.

“Public partnerships with safety and security organisations, the religious community, businesses, NGOs, and academics, are essential, but a positive working partnership with the police is needed first and foremost.”

He said he had made sure that the new minister received a copy of the province’s Community Safety Act for consideration when determining policing policy.”

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Cape Argus