Alderman JP Smith, along with enforcement officers, has been placing emphasis on public safety during the festive season. Smith is pictured handing out information leaflets to Capetonians. Picture: Supplied

Durban - The City of Cape Town made dozens of arrests and issued close on 2 000 fines in the past week in efforts to clamp down on festive season crime. 

According to the city’s mayoral committee member for safety and security, alderman JP Smith, 22 people had been arrested by Metro police and 1992 fines issued for by-law and traffic contraventions. 

Those arrested face charges of assault, possession of dangerous weapons, drunk driving, and possession of illegal property and imitation firearms.

Of particular concern were four arrests in Khayelitsha on charges of domestic violence, said Smith. 

"We know that domestic violence is a massive problem in many households. It is fuelled by substance abuse, which unfortunately increases over this time of year and puts people at risk out and about, but also in their own homes. 

"I encourage any person who finds themselves in an abusive situation to call for help. Our public emergency communication centre will dispatch the appropriate resources. 

"Our city enforcement staff are trained to handle domestic violence cases and will step in if required, but they can’t if they don’t know that it is happening," said Smith.

Metro Police officers also conducted various social crime prevention awareness sessions. They were joined by Smith and Cape Town executive mayor Dan Plato.  

The group distributed hundreds of pamphlets outlining various safety tips for the public, particularly over the festive season.

"It is the function of policing agencies to keep the public safe, but civilians too have a role to play in ensuring their own safety by being mindful of what criminals get up to and how they exploit innocent people. 

"As we enter the last-minute pre-Christmas rush, I appeal to the public to be aware of their surroundings at all times, and to be wise to the risks like ATM fraud and robberies. Rather shop in groups, be discreet in the handling of cash, and please always keep an eye on your personal belongings," said Smith.

African News Agency (ANA)