Mandela Bay Tourism to strategise plan against industry crime

FEBRUARY 24, 2016

An urgent action plan to fight the worrying crime rate in Nelson Mandela Bay’s (NMB) prime tourism, residential and educational area of the beachfront is to be discussed on Thursday at a special meeting involving key role-players.

Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism chief executive, Mandlakazi Skefile said that it was essential to preserve the reputation of the beachfront as a safe environment for everyone, including international and South Africa visitors to the city.

“By and large, the area is safe, but recently there has been a worrying trend of more crime occurring, particularly in terms of break-ins and ATM scams,” Skefile said.

“There are also continuing concerns about the theft of vehicles and people breaking into parked cars.
It is essential that this trend is halted for the sake of all sectors, including residents, businesses, the increasing number of students from NMMU living in the area, and for visitors as the area is the major focal point of the region’s tourism industry.”

“To ensure a drop in such crimes, tourism and business stakeholders will meet on Thursday with the aim of drawing up an action plan, to be implemented urgently.”

Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism will engage with fellow stakeholders to discuss measures that could assist prevent crime incidents of a similar nature.

Beachfront Safety and Security Forum chairman John Preller is co-ordinating the meeting. Those invited include the tourism agency, Humewood police commander Brigadier  Brigadier Ronald Koll, metro safety and security portfolio head Councillor Fikile Desi, metro disaster management head Jester Mangena, metro safety and security head Andre du Toit,   PE Metro Bed and Breakfast Association chair Shena Wilmot, and metro economic development, tourism and agriculture (EDTA) executive director Anele Qaba.

The meeting will be held at Councillor Rob Wylde’s office on the first floor of the Seagate Centre in Torquay Street, Summerstrand, at 11am.

Furthermore Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism will investigate manners in which to collaborate more efficiently with the Tourism Safety Initiative (TSI) as well whilst motivating stakeholders to participate in the programme for the greater safety initiatives of the industry in or destination.

The Tourism Safety Initiative (TSI) is powered by the Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA) and is a tourism safety information portal and trade support programme. It is a private sector initiative and a vehicle through which they aim to address safety and security challenges.

The TSI information database is the strategic nodal point for collecting, analysing and disseminating information relating to crimes against the industry. The TSI coordinates support for crime victims in the tourism industry including emergency services, incident reporting, trauma counselling and logistical support for travellers.