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Kouga-Express
Crime combatting centre to clean up
Community services portfolio councillor, Daniel Benson, Kouga traffic chief, Randall Prinsloo, Roland de Vries and Kouga Executive Mayor, Horatio Hendricks, attended the first successful community safety workshop at Mentors Country Estate recently.Photo:SUPPLIED

THE Kouga Municipality is set to launch an integrated intelligence operation centre in Humansdorp within the next week – clamping down on escalating crime in the region and neighbouring towns.

This after the first successful community safety workshop took place at Mentors Country Estate last week.

The workshop forms an integral part of the Keep Kouga Safe campaign, launched in September last year.

Hosted by retired Major General, Roland de Vries, the workshop – which focused on preventing and combatting crime through a collective approach – brought together residents, business owners and safety and security experts, from across the region, for three days of brainstorming to lay the foundation of an effective community safety plan.

“With the use of technology, including CCTV cameras, the integrated intelligence operation centre will direct and orchestrate the community safety plan on a 24/7 basis,” said community services portfolio councillor, Daniel Benson.

“The centre will work in close collaboration with all relevant role players, including the South African Police Service, agricultural and civic rights organisations, municipal departments, law enforcement and emergencies agencies, NSRI, nature reserves, private security companies, businesses, schools and churches.”

In addition to the centre, five community safety units will be established:

. Sector 10: Jeffreys Bay and the surrounding informal settlements and rural homesteads;

. Sector 20: Humansdorp and Cape St Francis;

. Sector 30: Gamtoos Valley (Baviaans, Patensie, Hankey, Loerie, Crossways, Thornhill, and Gamtoos Mouth);

. Sector 40: Oyster Bay; and

. Sector 50: Tsitsikamma, Karee-douw and Storms River.

According to Benson, given the escalating threat of crime and terror in many regions and the rapid degeneration of political, economic and social conditions, communities need to take control of their own safety to the best of their ability.

“Community safety, in this regard, aims to empower communities to pursue self-protection in hope, trust and faith,” he said.

“It also implies courage and perseverance to develop own potential to help combat all forms of crime effectively.”

According to Benson, crime affects all our daily lives and hampers economic growth.

“It scares off investors and impacts negatively on industries such as tourism on which our region relies heavily for job creation and security,” he said.

“Addressing crime effectively is, therefore, essential to improve the socio-economic circumstances of our communities.

“Together we can make Kouga Municipality the safest municipality in South Africa to live, work and play.”

- Issued by Kouga Municipality

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