Newly recruited JMPD officers have been given the command to breathe harder down the necks of criminals, as the City pushes through measures to revitalise its grand crime-fighting master plan.
The Executive Mayor, Cllr Geoff Makhubo says the #Joburg10Plus, a citywide crime-fighting strategy requires the JMPD alongside other law enforcement agencies to use tougher tactics to improve the efficiency of law enforcement as a deterrent to crime and grime.
The systematic multi-agency approach, which involves environmental health inspectors and members of the South African Police Service (SAPS), Community Policing Forums as well as Private Security companies is designed to increase police visibility across all quadrants of the municipality.
“The aim is to stop all crime and improve the quality of life and personal safety of all people in Johannesburg,” says Makhubo.
The ward-based law enforcement programme aims to improve compliance with the City’s by-laws and reduce actual incidences of violent crime by deploying at least 10 metro police officers as part of the rapid response unit to combat crime across all 130 wards in Johannesburg.
“We have adopted the Growth and Development Strategy (GDS2040) to build a liveable, sustainable and resilient City. Our residents must be able to work and live in a safe environment,” he explains.
Through the #Joburg10Plus initiative, Cllr Makhubo says all crime will be targeted, from felony crimes to bag snatching, pickpocketing, cellphone theft, smash-and-grab attacks, indecent assault, robbery and hijackings.
#Joburg10Plus also aims to address social issues, including the proliferation of liquor outlets and alcohol abuse, endemic poverty, the high concentration of illegal drug manufacturing plants, hijacked buildings and environmental conservation. It’ll address traffic management, basic service delivery, crime prevention, by-law enforcement and engage in proactive policing through improved community relations.
The Executive Mayor concedes that Johannesburg has turned into “a hub of criminal activity” and this was worrying.
“As the Government of Local Unity, we are duty-bound to defeat crime in our City,” he says.
The revitalised #Joburg10Plus covers the City’s geographical space through increased police visibility, timely responses and decisiveness to reduce the fear of crime and encourage residents and visitors to utilise public spaces and other amenities.
“Ward by Ward, we are reclaiming our City from criminals who are terrorising our communities,” he adds.
The joint policing strategy is also tailored to address persistent urban management challenges, which lead to crime and grime and to improve the effectiveness of dealing with bylaw infringements by increasing police patrols.
“An increase in police visibility in our wards is pivotal to the fight against the scourge of crime,” he says.