SJC takes ministry of police to high court

Advocacy groups, the Social Justice Coalition (SJC) and Equal Education (EE), have criticised the methods used to determine the allocation of police resources in poor black communities and have called on national police minister Nathi Nhleko to explain how they make their decisions.

This emerged during a meeting held between the two organisations on Wednesday March 30, in Makhaza.

The meeting was held at a site, which, in 2004, had been earmarked for a new police station. Following the meeting, the SJC submitted an urgent application to the Western Cape High Courth, on Thursday March 31, demanding that acting national police commissioner Kgomotso Phahlane and Mr Nhleko change the way resources were allocated.

They believed the criteria for the allocation of resources should be made publicfor public scrutiny, which, they said, would allow people an opportunity to see how resources were shared among police stations.

SJC generally secretary, Phumeza Mlungwana, told Vukani they submitted the application to the court to seek better ways to allocate resources from the government.

She said a number of things, such as population and crime rate, should be considered when allocating police resources

Ms Mlungwana said areas like Rondebosch had foot patrols and officers on motor bikes, resources she believe could be used better in the townships.

She added that more than 300 people were killed in Nyanga between 2014 and 2015, while only six had been killed in Camps Bay in the past 10 years, yet Camps Bay police station had more resources than township stations.

Ms Mlungwana said the recent murder of 19-year-old Sinoxolo Mafevuka highlighted differenceand inqualities among police stations and neighbourhoods.

“It took two weeks for the police to make an arrest, while it took about 36 hours to arrest the killers of 16-year-old FranziskaBlochliger,” she said.

Last month Sinoxolo’s body was found in a communal toilet in Khayelitsha’s SST section, and Franziska was raped and murdered while jogging in Tokai forest.

She added that police took a lot of time just to respond in areas like Khayelitsha and Nyanga which have some of the highest numbers of murders reported.

Musa Zondi, spokesperson for Mr Nhleko, said he could not comment on the matter.

“If they had approached us before going to court, it was going to be a different story.

But they had opted to go to court first, therefore we have no choice but to meet them in court,” he said.