Statement on Minister Cele’s heavily armed oversight of Cape Town beaches
The Western Cape Minister of Community Safety, Albert Fritz, was deeply concerned to see that the Minister of Police, Bheki Cele, was escorted by heavily armed police officers to oversee compliance at some of Cape Town’s beaches yesterday.
This as many hard-working SAPS officers battle to fight violent crime in many of our communities, often without the proper resourcing they need from the National Government.
Throughout 2020, there have been 1640 homicides in the 11 priority areas, which are all located in the Cape Flats. These account for 44% of homicides in the province for the year. In Week 50 there were 50 homicides recorded in the 11 areas, an increase from 41 in the previous week.
Minister Fritz said, “You don’t need heavily armed police officers to oversee compliance with health and safety protocols by families on Western Cape beaches, especially when the SAPS and the City’s law enforcement already have extensive festive season plans in place”.
Fritz added, “Where we do need Minister Cele’s heavily armed police escorts is in our fight against organized and violent crime on the Cape Flats.”
Minister Fritz continued, “We also know that on weekends and public holidays, such as yesterday, violent crime increases and that this is often related to the increase in alcohol consumption. This is precisely when these heavily armed officers should have been patrolling in our vulnerable communities.”
Minister Fritz concluded, “Given the shockingly high number of murders which took place across just 11 precincts in our province, this armed show of force at our beaches is unacceptable. We request that the Minister stop using police resources to score cheap political points, and rather helps us fight crime in the Western Cape.”
Cayla Ann Tomás Murray
Spokesperson for Minister Albert Fritz
Tel: 021 483 9217
Cell: 064 121 7959