Special skills are the answer to keep Cape's crime wave in check, says SAPS

The police believe that specialized personnel is the answer to crime that the province seizes.

The SAPS admitted that, despite a shortage of 1 500 staff, this will not solve the problem, but instead that skilled staff, who will start their specialized and skilled training later this year, is what is needed.

On Wednesday, SAPS's regular community safety commission was informed by the SAPS to provide an update on Operation Thunder, which began on 11 May.

The Western Cape police commissioner Khombinkosi Jula and head of the anti-gang department of the province of Jeremy Vearey were part of the contingent and provided feedback on Operation Thunder, which sent 257 staff from the OMC environments to nine stations in the province, specifically targeted and focus on hotspots and identified individuals.

The police stations where Operation Thunder was executed were Mitchells Plain, Philippi, Steenberg, Manenberg, Elsies River, Bishop Lavis, Philippi East, Ravensmead and Worcester.

"More does not always mean better What we need is staff with specialized skills to tackle gangs We can handle fewer staff if we have more specialized staff.

"We will have about four or five units of which the first group will be trained at cluster level in December, and will be aggressive (to be aggressively trained to deal with crime)," said Jula.

Vearey responded to the question of where illegal firearms and firearms came from, presented to him by the standing committee, saying that a "single source pipeline" was identified and linked to former top agent Chris Prinsloo.

"Approximately 800 of these guns are still in circulation and a joint effort is being made to remove those weapons from the streets, and cases of Preventing Organized Crime (Poca) are being built around them," he said.

The police said their fight against crime and gangsterism is not lost, as was pointed out by the standing committee.

"We have found that in crimes people will not come up with (normal) information in the (shooting) scene.This requires an intelligence process if no witnesses emerge.The availability of witnesses is also a big challenge in the province .

"We notice that people are not always willing to relocate if they are placed in witness protection, but this is not an insurmountable challenge," said Vearey.

For the period from 11 to 19 August the police reported 11 154 arrests because of the efforts of Operation Thunder. The police were able to confiscate 3 018 rounds of illegal ammunition and 130 firearms.

Compared with the same period last year, four of the nine stations experienced a decrease in the number of murder cases. The presentation detailed that Manenberg, Ravensmead, Steenberg and Worcester experienced declines in murder and attempted murder cases.

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