2013/2014 annual crime statistics expected today

BY TAI CHISHAKWE - SEPTEMBER 19, 2014

Anticipation surrounds the 2013/2014 annual crime statistics which will be released by Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko today (Friday) in Pretoria.

The 2012/2013 figures, which were released exactly a year ago, painted a bleak picture about the levels of crime in the Eastern Cape and South Africa. The stats showed an increase in the serious crimes such as murder, burglary, aggravated robbery and hijackings.

Then Minister of Police, Nathi Mthethwa, said that the number of murders had increased by 0.6%. The Eastern Cape had the highest murder rate in South Africa, followed by the Western Cape, Free State, and the Northern Cape.

The increase in sexual offences in the province per 100,000 of the population was the second highest in the country.

Burglaries at non-residential premises (businesses) were also a cause for concern. The increase per 100,000 of the population was the highest in the country – or 16% up from the 2011/12 statistics.

One expert described the crime statistics as "the worst figures seen in 10 years".

However, national police commissioner Riah Phiyega remained optimistic and said crime in South Africa was under control.

"The story of SAPS [the SA Police Service] is a story of assurance and confidence. When I look at the crime situation over a period of nine years, you all see that there is a general decline," she said last year.

Image: Wikipedia.