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The Year in Review: South Africa’s struggle with crime in 2023

As South Africans look back at 2023, it has been another bloody, crime fuelled year for many with the country’s rampant murder and robberies casting a dark shadow yet again.

As South Africans look back at 2023, it has been another bloody, crime fuelled year for many with the country’s rampant murder and robberies casting a dark shadow yet again.

Trisha Parshotam the CEO of Dragon Protection Services noted that in the first three months of the year, South Africa witnessed over 6,200 murders, averaging 70 per day.

his alarming statistic unmasks a deep-seated crisis in the country’s law and order situation.

The year began with a horrific incident just 29 days in, where a birthday party in Gqeberha, Eastern Cape, turned tragic with eight people killed and three injured in a mass shooting.

The violence continued unabated, with the shocking murder of global music icon Kiernan Forbes, known as AKA, in Durban.

Drive-by shootings, particularly in KwaZulu-Natal, became a disturbingly regular occurrence, with multiple incidents recorded on some days.

By mid-year, the police recorded 6,228 murders, a slight decrease from the previous year but still reflecting a staggering average of over 70 murders daily.

Women and children comprised a significant portion of these victims, with 1,188 deaths.

The majority of these murders were attributed to arguments, acts of vigilantism, or robberies gone wrong.

The Western Cape suffered from taxi violence and gang wars, while the rise in kidnapping for ransom cases instilled fear among high-net-worth individuals and families, leading to an increased reliance on bodyguards for everyday activities.

The Global Organized Crime Index 2023 highlighted the growth of mafia-style criminal networks in South Africa, a testament to the evolving and complex nature of crime in the country.

Beyond these headline-grabbing incidents, countless South Africans faced hijackings, home invasions, gender-based violence, and other crimes that often went unreported.

Reflecting on this dire situation, Parshotam expressed frustration and concern over the persistent high crime rates.

Despite efforts by law enforcement and community initiatives, significant progress remains elusive.

The pervasive threat of crime affects not only individual safety but also hampers the nation’s social and economic development.

Looking ahead to 2024, Parshotam emphasises the need for a multidimensional approach to crime prevention.

This involves the active participation of citizens, community leaders, businesses, the security industry, and government authorities.

She advocates for robust crime prevention strategies, enhanced community policing, and a culture of vigilance and reporting.

The private security industry, according to Parshotam, plays a vital role in complementing law enforcement efforts. Investment in advanced technologies, training, and personnel is crucial for effective security solutions.

Collaboration between private security firms and law enforcement is key to bridging resource and capability gaps, leading to a more coordinated approach to crime prevention.

Parshotam calls for a collective effort to address South Africa’s crime epidemic.

“It is a shared responsibility of all stakeholders to move beyond complacency and work towards a safer and more secure nation. Only through sustained commitment and collaboration can significant progress be made in reducing crime rates and ensuring the safety and well-being of all South Africans,” she said.

Source: IOL News –


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Founded in 1996, Dragon Protection Services boasts over 25 years of expertise in the security industry. This extensive experience translates into a deep understanding of diverse security needs and challenges. Our team is composed of highly trained professionals adept at handling various security scenarios with utmost precision and professionalism.

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