14 February 2019

South Africa: Police Urge Elderly to Be More Alert and Vigilant

press release

Police in Port Elizabeth is urging the elderly to be more vigilant and alert when at home. Elderly people are vulnerable victims to criminals and very often are very trusting of anyone especially strangers that enter their property.

Police are appealing to elderly persons living on their own to take extra precautions in safeguarding their safety as well as safeguarding their property and personal belongings. This advice is issued after a 79-year-old man was allegedly robbed at his house in Mount Pleasant on Tuesday, 12 February 2019.

According to police information, it was at about 09:30 when the complainant was busy outside and as he went inside he remembers falling and waking up minutes later. When he woke up he realised that an unknown amount of cash was taken. It is further alleged that the gardener who started working for him three weeks ago was at the house on the day of the incident. He disappeared soon after the alleged robbery.

Police are requesting the elderly to ensure that gardeners and domestic workers are properly interviewed and copies of their relevant identification document and addresses obtained prior to employment.

Never leave doors or gates open when casual labourers are being utilised at home. Always make sure that regular visits by family or friends are done and/or notify a close family member/friend on the days that the gardener or other help will be at the house. NEVER trust strangers and never allow them into the house no matter the genuine or courteous behaviour they may portray. Alarm systems must be activated when retiring to bed at night. Close family (children) or other concerned relative or friend/pastor should make regular visits to the house to ensure that all is well. Neighbours are advised to look out for their elderly neighbour as frequent as possible especially during the evenings to assist them in locking up.

The elderly are important pillars of society and their well-being and safety must be protected.

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