South Africa remains a very dangerous place to live with rapes, murders, carjackings, and cash in transit heists on the increase.
In just three months, more than 10 000 rapes and over 5 700 murders were committed in the country.
Releasing crime statistics on Friday for the 1st quarter of this financial year, Police Minister Bheki Cele said the period coincided with level five lockdown that kept almost everyone indoors and most businesses closed.
“In the first quarter, the subcategories of crimes such as contact crimes, sexual offences, aggravated robberies, contact-related and property-related crimes have recorded a never seen before double-digit increases,” said Cele.
“Ordinarily, this would have been catastrophic, but I assure the nation, this is not the case.
“I repeat, we cannot compare the same period of this year and last year, due to the skewed and abnormal crime trends, caused by the different levels of lockdown.”
“While we will not sweep the high and unnatural figures under the carpet, we will instead bring to the fore a holistic picture of comparing the 2021/22 Quarter one crime figures to a ‘normal period’ two years ago where there was no Lockdown.”
Cele said contact crimes such as murder, attempted murder, sexual offences, and all categories of assault registered a 60, 6% increase, compared to the corresponding period of the previous financial year.
“In the three months of reporting, a 66, 2 % increase in murder was recorded,” revealed the minister.
Between April and the end of June 2021, some 5 760 people were murdered in South Africa.
This is 2 294 more people murdered compared to the corresponding period in the previous financial year.
Compared to a period without Lockdown, it would result in an increase of 362 more deaths.
“From a sample of 4 467 cases it was determined that a total of 2 531 people were murdered in public places like on the street, open fields, parking areas and abandoned buildings,” said Cele.
He said 1 385 murders occurred at the home of the victim or of the perpetrator.
The minister said that 206 of the murders occurred at liquor outlets and are the fourth most likely place a person could be killed in South Africa.
Cele revealed that 10 006 people were raped between April and June 2021.
“This is an increase of 4 201 cases, amounting to a 72.4% increase, compared to the skewed previous reporting period,” said Cele.
Cash-in-transit heists were also on the increase with 46 such robberies committed between April and June this year.
These figures show there were 27 more cash-in-transit heists compared to the previous reporting period.
There were as many as 181 attacks on farms and small-holdings occurred between April and the end of June 2021. At least 119 of the incidents were robbery-related, resulting in 15 murders.
Other crimes like stock theft, domestic violence and aggravated robberies such as carjacking increased were also on the rise.
Stock thefts recorded a decline during the period under review.
Cele said more work must be done to ensure the safety of all those who live within the borders of South Africa