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Date: 02 May 2012
Title: Gauteng police making progress in crime fight
Pretoria - Visible policing, improved detective services, cooperation with communities and rooting out criminal elements within the police are just some of the ways in which Gauteng police are dealing a blow to crime.
While the latest figures have not been released as yet, Gauteng Police Commissioner Lieutenant-General Mzwandile Petros is confident that crime in the province is on the decline.
"I do sleep at night. My phone is not ringing as much as it used to when I came here [to the province] in 2010 which is an indication that there is definitely an improvement... I'm comfortable in terms of the performance of police in the previous financial year," he said.
An increase in police visibility is having the desired impact and is serving as a deterrent to crime. A total of 1 200 police vehicles are deployed daily to community neighbourhoods as part of sector policing - this figure excludes the 100 vehicles deployed daily from the Flying Squad and Dog Unit.
Police intend to sustain this strategy, added Lieutenant-General Petros.
Detectives have also been trained and resourced to ensure that they can do their jobs effectively and secure convictions.
Lieutenant-General Petros said now that resources had been invested, the desired outputs - quality services from police - needed to be seen.
He highlighted the need to develop a "leadership core" to ensure that even when the current leadership is gone, the next set of leaders are equipped to take their place and deliver quality services.
With regards to the criminality within SAPS, Lieutenant-General Petros said police were closing in on those within their ranks accused of criminal activity. During consultations with Gauteng residents he had found that people were sick and tired of criminal elements among the police.
"We have not been shy in Gauteng to say we have been arresting our own... We are not boasting about it... we are doing what we promised," he said.
From 1 September 2010 to 5 April 2012, 634 SAPS employees were arrested in Gauteng. Of these employees, 272 members were dismissed - 95 for corruption and fraud; 25 for defeating the ends of justice; 59 for offences relating to theft, possession of stolen goods and robbery and 47 for murder, serious assault and attempted murder.
A further 46 were dismissed for transgressions such as sleeping on duty, possession of drugs and offences related to the code of conduct.
Lieutenant-General Petros pointed out that it was not an outside agency that was making these arrests but fellow police officers - an indication that the majority of police officers were law abiding citizens. - BuaNews