Helping or impeding?
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Helping or impeding?

With the crime in residential areas on the increase, Community Policing Forums have emerged to address a problem they say the police are doing little about. But is everyone on board? Doesn’t seem so, says Terence Pillay.

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In the last two years, residents living in the Upper Highway area have been hit hard by violent crimes. The incidents got so out of hand that SAPS had put together a special task force to address this problem in the suburb.

About a year ago, the Community Policing Forum, headed by Corne Broodryk, put together a voluntary community patrol comprising members of the area. They patrolled the streets of Kloof on weekends on their own steam, acting as a deterrent to crime. In a year they managed to drop the crime rate by 80%, says Broodryk.

One of the identifying features of these community patrollers was the flashing green light in their car stationed on top of Fields Hills. When people saw this, they knew they could call on these men who had a direct line to the police who could now act faster thereby catching criminals in the act!

But now the Metro Police have decided to police these green lights and impose a R500 fine on these men every time they see the lights flashing. They say the use of these lights contravene the Road Traffic Act, which is all well and good.

But what about the millions of other road traffic bylaws that are contravened on a daily basis that the Metro Police are doing nothing about? Taxis in particular are the biggest offenders but we witness them committing various offences with apparent impunity.

What do you think? Should Metro be assisting or impeding the efforts to curb crime?

You can email Terence Pillay at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @terencepillay1 and let him know what you think.   

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