CRIME over May and June appears to have increased compared to the same period last year, according to statistics provided by the Port Alfred SAPS at the monthly meeting of the Port Alfred Community Policing Forum.
The CPF usually deals with a month at a time, but at the meeting at the Port Alfred police station on Tuesday they discussed crime over the months of May and June.
According to the statistics crimes in June included malicious damage to property and other property crime.
Crime in the Port Alfred CBD also showed an increase compared to the same period last year.
Increased crime in sector 3A (Station Hill) added to June’s higher figures. On the other hand sector 4’s (farms) figures for May and June were an improvement on last year. Property crime appeared to dominate the report.
Counter crime was a big contributing factor to the statistics, with the explanation of counter crime being when two opposing parties have laid charges against each other. June was dominated by protests by the EFF and other groups resulting in a number of cases being opened.
June was also dominated by common robberies, some in which the robbers were armed with knife. House robbery was also a major concern.
One of the dominant protests discussed was the EFF protest outside the municipal offices in Campbell Street, which seemed to be on everyone’s lips. A high number cases were opened after the protests, with ANC members opening cases against EFF members, and EFF members opening counter-cases against ANC members.
This appeared to make June the worst month.
Port Alfred cluster commander Brigadier Morgan Govender, who attended the meeting in the absence of detectives, said local detectives were attending a three day conference.
In his comment on protests, he said government was regarding the burning of tyres during protests as damage to property because the road surface is ruined. CPF members applauded his comment, and said it would make a difference in terms of arresting the offenders.
Station Hill appeared to be an area of concern with crimes linked to drugs and alcohol. CPF chairperson George Galbraith stated that Station Hill needed help in social structure. He suggested that 67 minutes be spent at Station Hill cleaning the school grounds as an indication that it was taken care of. Lack of street lights is believed to be another contributing factor to crime, because criminals take advantage of hiding in the darkness.