South Africa: Joint Safety Plan for Festive Season Announced

press release

Joint tourism safety plan for festive season is announced

Firstly, let me start by appreciating the support received from Minister of Police Bheki Cele and South African Police. Since my arrival in the Department of Tourism, the sector has raised great concern about safety affecting tourism, to the extent that our international arrivals to South Africa have dropped. Without a doubt, the challenges around safety had negatively affected our major markets.

We engaged with the Minister of Police and various stakeholders, which has led us to today's announcements resulting from collaborative efforts by us as the Department on behalf of our sector represented by TBCSA and the Police. Accordingly, we have crafted a workable Tourism Safety Plan, integrating a (1) proactive preventative measures to potential incidents (2) Responsive measures that will ensure quick and effective operational response, and most importantly (3) An aftercare programme that focuses on measures to facilitate and provide victim support after an incident has occurred.

The strategy, to guide our response to the challenges of tourism safety which impacts on the country's tourism potential, was developed in consultation with various structures. We can also share that a forum has been established and includes representatives from the various stakeholders in the industry representing, Airlines, Rail Operators, Accommodation etc. In the long term, we will remodel the Tourism Monitors Programme so that that they are linked with SAPS Community Policing Forums and Community Safety Patrollers as part of SAPS Community Policing Strategy.

Our task as a sector is immense as we occupy the number two spot in the list of government priorities. This is because the government understands the potential of this sector to economic growth and job creation. This strategy has been costed and we are confident of its implementation through this festive season and over the next six months as a pilot programme. The Minister of Police will go into details on the plans in as far as it relates to policing.

We believe that the public will see value in government efforts and the intervention measures implemented for this festive season. The joint effort between government and the private sector is evidenced today by these partnerships formed to deal decisively with the safety of our visitors and to ensure that South Africa remains a destination of choice. I am pleased to announce that R40million from the TOMSA levy has been reprioritized towards dealing with safety issues.

The implementation plan and the initiatives of the private sector initiatives is funded through the Tourism Business Council South Africa (TBCSA) administered Tourism Levy. The pilot interventions include:

Private security to work under the command of police

Use of Technology, to respond to the challenges

Integration and deployment of Tourism Monitors at private establishments including the interphase of operators to interact with various provincial joint operations centres for early warning, reporting incidents and sharing information on potential risks

As a department, we continue to invite the public sector to come partner with us for the good of the country and effectively our economy

We want to emphasize the importance of collaborative effort in dealing decisively with the safety of our visitors and to ensure that South Africa remains a destination of choice, and committed to bring in more partners into the fight against crime in general and tourism safety in particular. We are certain that with this plan, our guests and South Africans traveling will also have a pleasant time visiting our various attractions until their safe return home.

Media inquiries:

Hlengiwe Nhlabathi-Mokota

Media Liaoson Officer : Ministry of Tourism

Tel: 012 444 6772

Cell: 064 754 8426

E-mail: hnhlabathi@tourism.gov.za

Lirandzu Themba

Media Liaison Officer : Ministry of Police

Tel: 012 444 6607

Cell: 082 604 9080

Email: lirandzu@tourism.gov.za

Event Category:

Government activities

Issued by: Department of Tourism

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