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Cele says it's unfair to blame police alone for high crime rate

03 June 2022 - 20:15
Police minister Bheki Cele. File photo.
Police minister Bheki Cele. File photo.
Image: Supplied

Police minister Bheki Cele says it is not fair to place the blame solely on police for the high rate of crime in the country. 

He was speaking to the media after the release of quarterly crime statistics on Wednesday, which showed incidents of murder and rape had increased since the same time last year.  

After his report on the statistics in parliament on Friday morning he was asked by the DA's Ockert Terblanche if he should resign.

“All the [issues] we're supposed to be focusing on, like gender-based violence, have  increased. It cannot go on,” said Ockert.

“In any self-respecting country, the minister would have resigned by now. The previous national commissioner resigned. I think it's time for the minister to follow the national commissioner.

“SA is at war with itself ... the Ukraine seems to be safer.”

ACDP leader Kenneth Meshoe asked if the issue with crime was “an issue of leadership”.

He said when people spoke about the July unrest they mostly talked about the lack of police intelligence. “It seems to be the case that there is poor intelligence in clusters.”

He added: “The fact that we [leadership] don't have details of intelligence and where they are working — how can we ensure intelligence is working and not resting?

“From the rest of the world it looks like SA has poor leadership.”

After Cele delivered the crime stats, a journalist asked him who was responsible for the high crime rate in the country.

Cele responded that in the parliamentary session he was asked about resigning and said it was not fair for blame to be placed on the police.

He used the crime statistics for rape as an example.

He said of the 10,818 recorded rapes about half took place in the residence of the perpetrator or victim.

“Is it fair to say it's failure of the police when a person is raped by their uncle in the middle of the night in the same house, in the same room?”

Cele ended his response by saying society needed to be held accountable for its own actions.

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