The Democratic Alliance in the Western Cape welcomes the release of the report by the Western Cape Police Ombudsman on the complaint of poor response by the South African Police Service (SAPS) at Overstrand stations, including Gansbaai, Kleinmond, Hermanus and Stanford.
MPP Reagen Allen said: “I welcome the report, as it highlights, among other things, the necessity for the reclassification of abalone poaching as organised crime in terms of Section 16 of the South African Police Service Act, Act 68 of 1995.”
“This finding correlates with the findings of the June 2017 Standing Committee report on the impact of abalone poaching on small-scale fishing communities, which stated that abalone poaching has a strong and undisputed link to gangsterism and drugs, with the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) stating at the public hearing in Cape Town that poaching is closely linked to crime syndicates.”
The DA in the Western Cape thanks the Ombudsman for his office’s swift and thorough investigation, which started in May 2019, into the inefficiency of the delivery of services by SAPS in the Overstrand municipal area. I also wish to thank Western Cape Community Safety Minister, Albert Fritz, for immediately starting to implement the recommendations made in the report.
The report recommends that the findings be:
- Escalated to the National Minister of Police, Bheki Cele,
- Referred to the Standing Committee for Community Safety, and
- Recommendations directed to the Western Cape Government Departments.
MPP Allen added: “The report will be brought to the Standing Committee on Community Safety for a full briefing on the investigation’s findings and I will propose to the committee that we call on the Acting Provincial Commissioner, Cluster Commander for the Overstrand region as well as Station Commanders of the relevant police stations to come and account to the committee”.