Urban safety checked in SA

The South African Cities Network has released the 2018/2019 State of Urban Safety in South Africa Report that claims that Tshwane has the lowest murder rate of all metros in the country.

The report is based on data from sources like the South African Police Service (SAPS) and Stats SA. It showcases the state of crime, violence and safety in the country’s nine metros: Johannesburg, Cape Town, eThekwini, Ekurhuleni, Tshwane, Nelson Mandela Bay, Mangaung, Buffalo City and Msunduzi. The researchers also compared the crime trends over a 13 year period starting from the 2005/2006 financial year.

Both Johannesburg’s and Cape Town’s murder rate increased compared to the previous year.

The lowest murder rate with 17 reported murders per 100,000 residents is registered in Tshwane, while Johannesburg’s has 31 and Cape Town’s has 69. They are followed by the Nelson Mandela Bay with 55 and eThekwini with 46.

“The increase in the murder rate in Cape Town is presumably driven by gang violence, which has been exacerbated by the supply of thousands of illegal firearms to criminal gangs in the city…There is also evidence to suggest that similar illegal firearm transfers into Nelson Mandela Bay have significantly contributed to the city’s elevated murder rate in recent years,” the report said.

The highest level of police activity targeting drunk driving belongs to Johannesburg.

It is also reported that the rate of registered sexual offences in the City has dropped by 60% between 2008 and 2018. However, the researchers say it doesn’t mean there actually were less crimes, for it could also signify a lower inclination to report such crimes to the police.

The nine cities were chosen for the study because they make up about 40% of the country’s population and therefore heavily contribute to the national statistics. These cities are responsible for 47% of murders, 76% of car hijackings, 73% of vehicle thefts, 64% aggravated robberies and 58% of residential robberies.

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