The people of the Free State are losing the war against crime due to the ANC's ineffective policing and on top of that it seems as if there is a shortage of critical police resources in the province as well.
The media reports that over the last week, police vehicles and officers were not available to respond to complaints and that is disturbing.
In two separate incidents of theft that took place on Thursday and Friday, there were no police vehicles available to transport the arrested offenders to the police station. There was reportedly also a shortage of police officers. The 10111 call-centre allegedly requested the complainants to transport the offender(s) to the police station themselves.
The FF Plus has taken note of complaints lodged with the police in this regard.
The provincial Department of Police, Roads and Transport is responsible for investigating the availability of police officers and vehicles at the province's 110 police stations every quarter.
If there is a shortage anywhere, the Department is supposed to report it to the national department. And then the national department is responsible for addressing these shortages.
By means of a question posed by the FF Plus in the provincial legislature, the party requested the Free State MEC for Police, Roads and Transport, Sam Mashinini, to indicate whether his Department conducted thorough surveys to determine if there are any shortages of resources at police stations in the province.
Mashinini must also indicate whether or not the alleged shortages of officers and vehicles were reported to the national department.
The increase in murders (10,9%) and carjacking (0,4%) in the Free State over the last financial year goes to show that the ANC is not able to effectively combat crime in the province. Police stations failing to respond to complaints because of a lack of critical resources simply cannot be allowed.
The FF Plus is worried that the two incidents in Bloemfontein are indicative of a general tendency in the province where police stations are unable to function effectively and offer the services they ought to. Rural and urban safety depend on provincial and national departments that are supposed to ensure effective policing and other related services.
It all starts with a political will and the MEC must take action to address the challenges and problems experienced by the police.
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