Police Minister Bheki Cele said yesterday via his spokesperson that he was encouraged by the declining murder rate and number of arrests made in the Western Cape since the commencement of Operation Lockdown.
Operation Lockdown began three-months-ago and saw defense force personnel deployed to the province to work alongside police in curbing violent crimes in the Cape Flats and other township areas.
Cele and deputy police minister Cassel Mathale received a consolidated report on the operational interventions in the Western Cape on Tuesday.
The interventions included Operation Thunder; the Anti-Gang Unit, and Operation Lockdown.
Operation Lockdown was launched in July 2019 and extended to March 2020. Some of the successes of the operations included 5 969 arrests, the seizure of 100 firearms, 196 rounds of ammunition and 565 knives.
Police Ministry spokesperson, Lirandzu Themba, said the government had invested a lot of resources in the Western Cape from 2018 to date. This was primarily informed by the crime statistics reporting pattern which revealed that more than 50% of the top 30 stations are located in the Cape metropole, with a specific focus on contact and trio crimes.
Themba also confirmed that there were still policing precincts where trio crimes and robbery aggravated crimes were on the increase, especially street robberies and car hijackings.
The spokesperson said the minister believed planning, intelligence and mutually beneficial partnerships would ensure the intended successes. The police ministry spokesperson noted that Operation Lockdown remained a temporary support to Western Cape police and the provincial SAPS operational planning was in preparation for the inevitable withdrawal of the additional forces.
She said the police in the Western Cape were aware of the extension of the duration of the SANDF deployment in Cape Town to March 2020. As a consequence, operations were still executed with vigour and strength without fail.
Themba added on saying integrated forces attached to Operation Lockdown had been hard at work executing operations in the identified areas or as guided by the crime threat analysis.
The operations will continue and communities are encouraged to share vital information on crime related issues with police using the Crime Stop number, 08600 10111.
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