Speech by Pieter Groenewald, MP, FF Plus, Budget Vote Debate: Police, Parliament, Cape Town, May 6 2010
The reality of South Africa is that more than 5,56 million people have in the past seven years been victims of violent crime in South Africa . More than 328 000 people have been murdered in South Africa since 1994. That is an average of 60 people a day. Nearly 800 000 women have been raped in South Africa since 1994. That means that a woman is raped every 10 minutes in South Africa . When this debate has been concluded, at least 14 women would have been raped.
The Constitution places a responsibility on the Minister to ensure that people in South Africa are protected against crime and that they are kept safe. From the above figures it is clear that this is not happening. In the light of this the FF Plus will be officially be submitting a proposal that a special fund is set up for the victims of violent crime. The trauma and human suffering of victims of violent crime are causing extremely high costs for those victims. I hope the ANC will support this proposal to at least try to restrict the financial losses suffered by victims of violent crime.
I am aware that the Minister says that farm murders should not be politicised. The reality is once again that the Minister cannot deny that there are indeed cases of farm murders where a political motive is involved. How does the Minister explain that a farm murder occurs, but nothing is stolen and nothing goes missing? There can only be one motive, and that is a political motive. The FF Plus will in due course be providing the Minister with proof that some farm murders are due to political motives.
Another aspect is the firearms re-licensing process. The Minister declared that firearm owners can indeed again apply for the re-registration of firearms during the amnesty period. That however did not happen and people who wanted to do it were shown away. I asked the Minister a question in Parliament as to how many legal firearms were used in crime by the legal owners of firearms as well as by criminals.
The Minister's answer was that he could not tell me. Now, I ask the Minister how he can accuse legal firearm owners that they contribute to crime if he cannot even provide me with any figures. The crime situation in South Africa demands that law-abiding citizens have to arm themselves against criminals. I know of so many cases in which, had the firearm owners not had their firearms with them, they would have been the victims of murder. We have to stop targeting legal firearm owners as if they are contributing to crime. It is simply not true.
The Police have to foster trust with the public. The Minister is on record that he has said that he wants a Police Service free from criminals. How is it them possible that a victim of a robbery, recognise a police officer at the police station, but the Police does not suspend the member and he is still working in the police station? It cannot be tolerated because it creates mistrust toward the Police and the Minister has to act against such cases otherwise he will not be fulfilling his Constitutional duty.
Issued by the FF Plus, May 6 2010
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