Violent crimes report headed for Parliament


A report on the violent nature of crime in South Africa, was commissioned by Cabinet in 2007, is to be tabled in Parliament in the next few weeks. Cabinet today authorised Minister of Police Nathi Mthethwa to release the document for public comment.

Mthethwa has welcomed Cabinet’s approval and says the Report on the Study on the Violent Nature of Crime in South Africa will be in the public domain in the coming weeks. His office says the study “seeks to answer the fundamental question on why crime in South Africa tends to be violent in nature.”

The minister notes that there has been some concerns from “certain sections of society”, often code or the opposition Democratic Alliance, into the delay in making this report public. He pointed out “that in order to come to a broader yet forward-guiding approach in answering this critical question”, the ministry had adopted a broader consultative process. “We first had to study this report’s findings and recommendations carefully. The next step was to ensure we share it within the cluster (the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security cluster) then to Cabinet. This after all, is our preferred approach when dealing with any proposal, research or input from various stakeholders so that we do not narrow our findings to one specific school-of-thought,” he says.

He adds “dealing with crime, particularly violent crime requires an integrated approach, participation as well as soliciting various ideas and qualitative research methodologies. Contrary to some skeptics in society, it has never – and will never – be this ministry’s intention to hide the report.”

Mthethwa’s office says they will present the finding to the Portfolio Committee on Police on November 9. “The ministry remains optimistic that post this engagement with the committee, the study will be released for public comment,” Mthethwa’s office said. “Mthethwa concluded by emphasising that, without pre-empting the findings, if indeed the study provides conclusive evidence of various factors that cause crime to be violent, government shall relook some of the current legislative and operational frameworks which may assist in reducing violent crime [sic].”