18 December 2018

South Africa: Mashaba Wants New NPA Boss to Expedite Prosecutions in Joburg

Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba has called on new National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) boss Shamila Batohi to ensure the prosecution of those who have been arrested by the City's metro police department.

The mayor says he does not understand why there has been a "lack of will" from the NPA to ensure that people arrested by the Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD) face the full might of the law. He says the JMPD feels "failed".

"We can only arrest and hand them over to the police and the NPA, and unfortunately, that is where we are failed".

Mashaba, who was releasing the JMPD's crime statistics for November at the City's council chambers, also said that errant motorists detained at roadblocks were let off too easily, with lenient bail conditions.

"I've seen a recent operation where over a thousand people were arrested over drunk driving, but cannot seem to find them anywhere in our cells, maybe because drunk driving is not deemed a high level criminal act".

JMPD chief David Tembe revealed that there had been at least 11 fatalities on the city's roads this festive season, down from 17 at the same stage in 2017.

Tembe also noted the arrests of at least 821 drunk drivers recorded in November. This category of arrests was significantly higher than the more than 600 recorded in October.

"We have also recovered 121 stolen motor vehicles, and arrested 13 people for reckless and negligent driving," said Tembe.

According to the JMPD's November crime stats, at least R86m worth of counterfeit goods have been confiscated, including fake medicine.

Mashaba said the production of fake goods impacted the city and the country's economy, and should be clamped down on as a matter of urgency.

"My national government does not seem to be taking this matter seriously and, if I were president, I'll bring the army to raid and remove all fake goods here at the country's economic hub."

Mashaba said his administration would employ at least 1 500 more JMPD officers in the next financial year, adding that this was necessary to deal with crime "head on".

Both Mashaba and Tembe have warned Joburgers that churches and parks will not be spared during the festive season.

"We have seen churches which are non-compliant and have loud music, and we appeal to them to comply with the City's regulations on gatherings," said Tembe.

Tembe said there would also be additional deployment of officers at parks throughout the city for the public's safety.

Source: News24

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