By Kaya 959 News
More than 2000 police vehicles across SAPS station in Gauteng are out of order. The Democratic Alliance is now urging National Police Minister and Gauteng Community Safety MEC, Faith Mazibuko, to ensure that the vehicles are attended to and be put back on the road to protect residents.
DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Community Safety, Michael Shackleton, said in an answer to a question put forward by the DA, Cele revealed that the province had 2170 police vehicles that were out of service.
Shackleton said this is an increase of 763 out of service vehicles compared to November 2020 where 1407 vehicles were unavailable.
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The following Gauteng police stations have the highest number of out-of-service vehicles:
Vereeniging Police Station: 100
Benoni Police Station: 82
Springs police station: 65
Protea Glen Police station: 58
Silverton Police Station: 54
Midrand Police Station: 53
Johannesburg Central Police Station: 50
In total, there are 5967 police vehicles that are operational in the province.
“Cele states that his department has increased command and control in terms of fleet management, and has deployed artisans from other garages to the problematic garages, to adequately address the high number of out of service vehicles. Further to this, the department is also using a Global Financial Authority to purchase bulk stock,” Shackleton said.
He said a situational analysis has been conducted in terms of mechanical transport to compile an operational risk and mitigation strategy in order to increase the number of operational vehicles.
“The lack of an adequate number of vehicles hampers police service delivery and puts the safety of the residents of Gauteng at risk, leaving SAPS officers with less vehicles for visibility patrol. We will continue to monitor the progress of the current interventions to ensure that our police stations each have a sufficient number of operational vehicles. We lastly call on Minister Cele to ensure that the current mitigation strategy that has been implemented, is reviewed on a regular basis to assess whether it is yielding any positive results,” Shackleton said.
The party said information from Statistics South Africa’s (StatsSA) Victims of Crime Survey (VOCS) has shown that people are always complaining about SAPS’s slow response time to emergency calls. At the extreme end, residents in Northern Cape, Free State, KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga complained that it took police an average of two hours to respond to an emergency call. A declining police vehicle fleet will only worsen this dire situation and put many lives at risk.
The DA holds the view that budget cuts to SAPS proposed by the Minister of Finance in his budget speech, should not be used as an excuse to compromise the effectiveness of the police service to respond to crime and keep people safe.
“The priority must always be to ensure that SAPS resources are spent on police services that serve communities directly,” the party said.