Ricochet News

Over 1 000 police vehicles out of service in the Eastern Cape alone: DA

MARCH 27, 2017
Over 1 000 police vehicles out of service in the Eastern Cape alone: DA

The Democratic Alliance (DA) on Monday said that it will submit follow-up questions after a reply to a Parliamentary Question by DA MP, Vusumzi Magwebu, revealed that over 8 000 police vehicles are currently in repair shops nationally - over 1 000 of the affected vehicles are in the Eastern Cape.

"More than 2 000 vehicles in Gauteng and over 1 500 vehicles in the Eastern Cape are currently out of service and some police stations have only four vehicles to serve eight sectors," described Zakhele Mbhele MP - the DA's Shadow Minister of Police.

"According to another National Council of Provinces (NCOP) reply, there are 48 247 police vehicles nationally.

"This means that a shocking 16.6% of all police vehicles are currently out of service and waiting for repairs and maintenance. Because of this, there is currently only one vehicle for every 5 South African Police Services (SAPS) members."

Mbhele said that a report received by the Gauteng legislature’s Portfolio Committee on Community Safety on Thursday last week furthermore revealed that there are serious challenges at the auxiliary garage, where police vehicles languish for up to three months.

"The report also noted a relationship between policing performance and resourcing in all eight sampled police stations.

"It is all too common for police members to lack the basic equipment they need to carry out their mandate of keeping South Africans safe," he said.

"Without vehicles, the police are not able to respond timeously to crimes taking place and therefore, the under equipping of the SAPS directly threatens the safety of ordinary citizens."

Mbhele said that the DA will establish the true extent of the crisis with follow-up questions and find out what the Minister of Police, Nathi Nhleko, and the SAPS command is doing about it.

"It is unacceptable for the police to be incapacitated because of something as simple as a failure to accurately keep track of vehicle repairs, collect vehicles on time and run functioning vehicle repair shops," he added.

"The DA cannot stand by while crime thrives as a result of not giving police members the equipment they need to make South Africa a safer place for all."