In the media briefing for the first quarter crime statistics for 2023/2024, the Minister of Police stated that the recorded 3.1% decrease in murders is not cause for celebration, as 6 228 lives have been lost. The IFP has previously stated that this type of decrease should not shift our focus from the fact that grievous crimes have been committed. While 196 fewer murders were committed during this quarter, we maintain our stance that there is no metric that can depict the loss of human life in a positive light.
We are especially saddened and outraged by the fact that the murder of women and children has once again increased.
Between April and June this year, 895 women were murdered, which is 40 more than the same quarter the previous year, while 293 children were murdered, which is 50 more than the previous year.
The crime stats also revealed that 42 773 rapes took place over the past 12 months, which equates to 3 564 per month, 119 per day, and almost five per hour. While the Minister and his accompanying panel were singing the praises of the results of the newly implemented Operation Shanela, it is clear that our women and children continue to live in fear.
Furthermore, 31 police officers were killed during this period, compared to 18 the previous year. We find this incredibly alarming, as it highlights the ever-increasing brazenness of criminals. We urge the Ministry to ensure that Operation Shanela also targets areas where the murders of these officers took place.
One blind spot we have identified in the Minister’s reports on the quarterly crime statistics, is the lack of feedback on the number of successful arrests and convictions related to the crimes reported. Therefore, we urge the Department of Police along with the Department of Justice, to work together in providing South Africans with an account of the arrests and convictions they have been able to affect during each quarter.
The IFP wishes to extend our deepest sympathies and condolences to the families of every victim included in these statistics. Whilst we engage with totals and percentages, may we never forget that they represent South Africans who have been wronged in the worst ways possible.
Hon. Zandile Majozi MP
IFP Member in Parliament for Police
073 052 9556