Minister Fritz welcomes deployment of additional LEAP Officers
Today, the Minister of Community Safety, Albert Fritz, welcomes the deployment of additional LEAP Officers to crime-ridden areas on the Cape Flats from tomorrow, 5 August 2021 onwards.
Minister Fritz said, “we are very happy at the progress that is being made in this regard. LEAP has managed to forge a very good working relationship with SAPS, and at a time when SAPS’s budget is being cut by national government, the deployment of these additional officers will no doubt serve as welcome reprieve.”
Tomorrow, 191 newly-trained LEAP Officers will be deployed in Kraaifontein, Mfuleni and Harare. The reaction teams currently deployed in Mfuleni will be moved back to Gugulethu.
Minister Fritz continued, “we have a lot of confidence in the training which our officers receive, which is at a very high standard; and we encourage our community members to do the same. When you see a LEAP Officer, you can be sure and confident that this is a well-trained, professional individual. And you can feel safe in that knowledge.”
The deployment of the cohort to Kraaifontein is especially timely in light of nine-year old Shante Abrahams being caught in the crossfire of a gang-related shooting in Scottsdene.
With this deployment, and in addition to Kraaifontein, LEAP Officers will now have a presence in Bishop Lavis, Delft, Gugulethu, Harare, Khayelitsha, Mfuleni, Mitchells Plain, Nyanga and Philippi which includes Hanover Park. The deployment will also be supplemented by an additional 106 officers after their complete their firearm competency training by the end of September 2021.
Minister Fritz concluded, “in line with the Provincial Safety plan, LEAP Officers will be deployed to crime hotspots based on data. They serve as a support to SAPS and the Metro Police, and contribute to greater visible policing. They cannot however replace SAPS. As the Provincial Government, we continue to do whatever we can in order to ensure that our children, like Shante, can live in a world where she can go to netball practice without being caught in crossfire; and that includes going beyond our mandate, as we are doing through our Safety Plan, but it also includes challenging the severely-reduced human and financial resource allocations to SAPS.”
“Our citizens need us to fight these fights, and that is exactly what we intend to do!”