Reducing violent crime in the Western Cape
‘Reducing violent crime in the Western Cape: Scenarios, Challenges, and Institutional Cooperation’
I would like to begin by sincerely thanking the Hanns Seidel Foundation for the ample support they have given to the Western Cape Government over the many years of cooperation, and for their dedicated support to Western Cape Safety Plan. In particular, I would like to thank the Foundation for having facilitated this workshop and for having made the necessary arrangements for the senior ranking Bavarian Police officials sitting before me, Mr Wolfgang Sommer, Mr Günter Okon and Mr Bernhard Egger, to be present here. Willkommen in Kapstadt!
Our partnership with the Hanns Seidel Foundation comes as a result of a long-standing regional partnership between the Free State of Bavaria and the province of the Western Cape. This two-day workshop presents an opportunity for collaboration, particularly in the realm of community policing and the Western Cape Safety Plan. Bavaria has a strong record in this regard and will aid the Province through the Hanns Seidel Foundation’s presence.
I further wish to acknowledge Advocate Mopp, representing the Director of the National Prosecuting Authority, Mr Rodney De Kock; City of Cape Town Law Enforcement Director, Robbie Robberts; Head of the Department of Community Safety, Gideon Morris; Western Cape Police Ombudsman, MR JJ Brand; Chief Director, Yashina Pillay; ISS Senior Researcher, Andrew Faull and his team; and our facilitator, Marike Groenewald. We hope that we will be able to work better together in reducing violent crime in the Western Cape.
The purpose of today is to understand the challenges and opportunities in collecting, analysing, and acting on safety-related data in the ten priority areas where (and when) we aim to reduce violent crime. The workshop further aims to facilitate institutional cooperation in the area of safety in each of the ten priority areas, as well as more broadly across the Province.
Indeed, the success of the Western Cape Safety Plan depends on the strength of partnerships built between the City of Cape Town, Western Cape Government, the South African Police Service and the other criminal justice stakeholders; as well as with external stakeholders such as the Hanns Seidel Foundation and the Free State of Bavaria. Again, I welcome our Bavarian counterparts who will guide us through critical engagement on the Western Cape Safety Plan.
As the Western Cape Government, we have reprioritised our budgets and programmes to improve the safety of our province. Through our Western Cape Safety Plan and with everyone’s dedicated support, we aim to halve the murder rate over the next ten years by deploying intelligence-led law enforcement where and when they are needed most.
This programme will be supported by implementing numerous violence prevention programmes which aim to address the socio-economic contributors to crime. However, we cannot do it alone and hope that we will be able to develop effective mechanisms to work together in order to reach our goal.
Premier Winde has personally tasked me with overseeing the training and deployment of additional law enforcement officers to the places and times where and when violent crime happens. I will also be working to expand the highly successful Chrysalis Academy, enhance police oversight and work to change legislation to reduce alcohol related harms.
Together with our partners in the City of Cape Town, we are hard at work to ensure that we train and deploy the law enforcement officers in the high crime and murder hotspots.
As we put our heads together over the course of the next two days, I encourage you all to work Better Together in the interest of safeguarding our beautiful province. Indeed, the work we do here today will have a significant impact on the safety of our province in the future.