The South African Police Service (SAPS) must pull out all stops to ensure that the culprits who are involved in assassinations and threats against politicians in the province are brought to book as a matter of speed. Unless they do this, the rising trend of politically motivated killings and threats will skyrocket.
The slide towards a criminal state must be stopped fully in its tracks. The SAPS must do their job.
The DA is alarmed by the increase in politics-related killings and threats in the Eastern Cape. According to preliminary research we have undertaken there has been a definite increase in the last 18 months.
It is quite clear that the trend of political killings that have been taking place in KwaZulu-Natal is now spilling over into the Eastern Cape. One can expect this trend to increase as political tensions rise.
Yesterday, the Nelson Mandela Bay Executive Mayor, Athol Trollip, highlighted death threats made against two councillors, Werner Senekal and Rano Kayser. Earlier this week, political conflict at an ANC Women ’s League meeting in Ntabankulu saw one person seriously hurt and the SAPS being called in to stop the violence. The province is still reeling from last weeks’ murder of the Speaker of the Raymond Mhlaba Municipality, Thozama Njobe.
Research by academics such as Dr Mark Shaw, UCT criminologist and author of Hitmen for Hire: Exposing South Africa’s Underworld, illustrate that there have been 1 200 incidents of personal- taxi-, political- and organised crime motivated hits in South Africa since 2000.
I have submitted legislature questions to the MEC for Safety and Liaison Weziwe Tikana, as to how many politically motivated assaults, attempted murders and murders had been reported to the SAPS in the last four financial years.
I also want to know if the SAPS keep these kinds of statistics, and if not whether they will consider doing so in the light of the current political climate.
The cost of providing increasing security details for politicians is something that the province and municipalities cannot afford. Good people cannot be driven out of politics by political assassins who are hell-bent on corruption.
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