The Eastern Cape crime statistics were released at the provincial head office in Zwelitsha on Tuesday, on the back of the release of the national statistics.
Safety and liaison MEC Weziwe Tikana said through the interpretation of the provincial crime statistics, showed there was progress was made by the province.
“The Eastern Cape province has seen a decrease in crime for the period April 1 2017 to 31 March 31 2018. This was confirmed by the national commissioner of police when the annual crime statistics were released,” Tikana said.
Despite Tikana’s optimism, the East London area actually saw an increase in contact and property-related crimes.
Statistics were divided according to the top 10 police stations within the Eastern Cape.
Trio crimes consist of carjacking, robberies in residential and non-residential areas, and cash-in-transit heists. These crimes almost doubled from 103 to 201 this year, with a 95.1% increase.
There was an increase in robberies at non-residential premises in the East London area from 63 in 2016/17 to 136 in 2017/18. This puts the city at No7 out of 30 stations in the country. Car-jacking increased from 22 to 36 reported cases.
Tikana said it wasn’t possible to have police officials on every street corner, thus making crime prevention a collective responsibility.
“For the SAPS to successfully arrest and assist in the prosecution of perpetrators, they need information that is at your disposal. That is why we shall continue to support street and village committees, community police forums, as well as all other legal structures that will assist our law enforcement agencies,” she said.
There was a notable increase of robberies with aggravating circumstances in East London from 465 in 2016/17 to 643 in the 2017/18 year.
Assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm increased in East London from 335 last year to 362. this year. Mdantsane showed a decrease from 433 in the previous year, to 361. Common assault increased by more than over 53% from 173 in the previous year to 266. Cambridge and Mdantsane had a decrease in cases to 234 and 323 respectively.
Tikana also emphasised that there should be increased police visibility at on identified crime hotspots, notably in the city areas, such as the Buffalo City Metro, Nelson Mandela Bay and Mthatha, where serious and violent crimes are reported.
The SAPS handed over 36 vehicles and 10 motorcycles to various provincial clusters.
In her address, Eastern Cape police commissioner Lieutenant-General Liziwe Ntshinga said that constables were the foot soldiers that in are at the front lines in serving the community.
“10 bikes were ordered for female staff and they will undergo training in December and January 2019, so that they may be able to go into rural areas,” Ntshinga said.
East London received four new vehicles and two motorcycles, with one vehicle allocated to the K9 unit.