The disconcerting increase in criminal activities makes it a matter of urgency to allow neighbourhood and farm watches to start functioning normally again to strengthen the hand of the police force in fighting crime.
The FF Plus made this appeal to President Cyril Ramaphosa today in response to the President's weekly newsletter in which he expressed his concern about the level of crime.
The FF Plus finds it incomprehensible that the Minister of Police, Bheki Cele, does not want to accept help from neighbourhood and farm watches while they function as the eyes and ears of the police and there is a good working relationship between them and the police.
The lockdown regulations make provision for formal security companies to continue functioning, but not for neighbourhood and farm watches and, thus, the FF Plus requested that the regulations be amended in this regard.
The sharp increase in the looting of schools is also a great cause for concern – the 55 incidents that occurred in Gauteng alone serve as proof. According to the Minister of Education, Angie Motshekga, 78 incidents occurred nationwide.
The FF Plus is worried that farm attacks may possibly increase seeing as rural safety structures and/or farm watches play a significant role in preventing such incidents and also make it more difficult for attackers and criminals to flee the scene of a crime.
There is already an increase in livestock theft and the theft of grain products still standing in the fields.
Much of the police force's energy and time is spent on enforcing the measures that were implemented to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Thus, the police force needs all the help it can get and so the FF Plus has asked President Ramaphosa to urgently address the matter.
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