Police performance plummets despite 50% budget increase - ISS

Corruption Watch and the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) have issued a breakdown in numbers that highlights the challenges facing policing ahead of Tuesday's release South Africa’s annual crime statistics by the South African Police Service.

Head of Governance at the ISS, Gareth Newham says the aim was to determine why problems of policing remain despite a budget increase of almost 50%.

We have noticed that the budget has gone up by almost 50%, currently standing at R87 billion but in that same period we have seen a decline in performance of visual policing...

Gareth Newham, Head of Justice and Governance at the Institute for Security Studies

We have seen a decline a crime intelligence as well as the decline in detection rates of serious crimes such as murder and robbery.

Gareth Newham, Head of Justice and Governance at the Institute for Security Studies

Despite this increase in resources, there's been a decline in performance and the consequence has been that in the same time period murder has gone up by 20% and robbery by 32%.

Gareth Newham, Head of Justice and Governance at the Institute for Security Studies

Newham says they found that there was a massive destabilisation in the way former police commissioner, Riah Phiyega, was running things. She had no experience and she didn't know what she was doing which caused a lot of chaos, says Newham.

He says the ongoing changing of national commissioners and the constant restructuring every time a new commissioner comes into office has caused the personnel on the ground to weaken.

That is the reason why we started this campaign because it starts at the top of the organisation, you can't start fixing policing without the top management.

Gareth Newham, Head of Justice and Governance at the Institute for Security Studies

Newham also spoke about the selection process of a police commissioner. He says the selection process of a commissioner is much easier than that of appointing a constable.

There need to be a clear criteria and there must be a competitive recruitment process.

Gareth Newham, Head of Justice and Governance at the Institute for Security Studies

To hear the rest of the interview, listen below:


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