Police Minister Bheki Cele on Wednesday revealed police had received over 10,000 fewer reports of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm this year, compared to the same period in 2019.
The minister said crimes of rape, murder, and hijacking declined by over 70% since the implementation of the national lockdown.
Cele said the murder rate had gone down by 72%, rape declined by 87.5%, and assault reduced by 85.2%.
Robberies at residential and non-residential premises, as well carjackings, had all been dramatically reduced by over 50%.
Cele credited much of this to the ban of liquor sales and heightened visibility of law enforcement officers in communities.
“The lockdown minus alcohol – besides dealing with COVID-19 issues – has dealt decisively especially with contact crimes that makes our people have a lot of fear,” he said.
But he said he was concerned about the high number of police officers charged with crime during the lockdown period.
The minister said the 89 officers who were charged would be pushed out of the South African Police Service.
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