Nearly 700 children kidnapped in Western Cape in past five years
Cape Town – The chief whip for the Democratic Alliance in the Western Cape legislature, Mireille Wenger, has released alarming findings on kidnappings in the province.
In a statement released on Monday, Wenger said the statistics were released after she posed questions to the provincial Community Safety MEC, Albert Fritz, in the provincial parliament on how many kidnappings had occurred involving children in the Western Cape.
She said it was revealed that in the past five years, 696 children have been kidnapped in the province.
During the same period, a total of 3 482 people were kidnapped, and Wenger said this meant children represented 20% of victims.
In the 2015/16 year, there were 767 kidnappings, of which 160 were children. In 2016/17, there were 616 kidnappings, of which 117 were children.
In 2017/18, there were 662 kidnappings, of which 156 were children. In 2018/19, there were 681 kidnappings, of which 138 were children.
And in 2019/20, there were 756 kidnappings, of which 125 were children.
“The DA therefore welcomes the undertaking by the Western Cape Department of Community Safety to prioritise the monitoring of child kidnappings through the court watching brief programme,” Wenger said.
She said while the number of child kidnappings remained relatively stable year on year, she would want to see a decline in the trend.
“This is why I have been using oversight mechanisms to monitor the number of child kidnappings in our province over the last five years.
“We will continue to monitor these crimes to ensure that efforts have impact and that we can save as many children as possible from this awful fate,” Wenger said.
African News Agency (ANA)