Metro cops’ lack of cars a disgrace

Nelson Mandela Bay Metro Police Chief Yolanda Faro
Nelson Mandela Bay Metro Police Chief Yolanda Faro
Image: Fredlin Adriaan

For a city with a crime problem, you would think ensuring the metro police have every resource they need to fight the scourge would be a top priority.

Not in Nelson Mandela Bay, where every other day a life is lost to gang violence, children go missing and ordinary residents are mugged by thugs.

For three months, 124 metro police officers have been forced to share nine cars as 19 have been in for minor repairs since July.

Weekend Post sister publication The Herald reported yesterday that the shocking number had been revealed at a safety and security portfolio committee by metro police chief Yolanda Faro.

Having more cars out of commission than on the road means the force’s efforts to fight crime have effectively been blunted.

Without the tools of their trade, which include roadworthy cars, they are being rendered useless.

Making matters worse is the fact that cars ordered in the previous financial year have still not been delivered, with the municipality’s fleet management services not telling metro police bosses what caused the delay.

We cannot afford to have a situation where criminals continue terrorising people without fear of being caught because there are not enough cars for patrols.

It has been proven that where there is high police visibility, crime drastically goes down.

This is why we need every metro police car on the road, keeping Bay residents safe  — not parked in government garages waiting to have flat tyres changed.

Having a crime crisis is also bad for the economy as it does not inspire investor confidence.

Creating a conducive environment for businesses does not only mean having a consistent water supply, keeping the lights on, having a clean city and a good roads network — it also means ensuring the level of crime is not astronomically high.

This is where the metro police come in.

Lawlessness can drive investors away and for a city which, just like the rest of SA, has had its economy devastated by Covid-19, we need more businesses to invest billions of rand into the Bay so that the 40.4% unemployed people in the metro will have jobs.

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