Easter assault cases surge in Mother City

By Buziwe Nocuze

Cape Town is concerned about the increase in reported assault and domestic violence cases over the Easter long weekend that the city says was fuelled by alcohol abuse.

The city’s Public Emergency Communication Centre recorded 2,725 incidents over the Easter long weekend, a nearly 20% increase from 2023’s total of 2,294.

This included 1,256 medical emergency calls, 108 fire incidents, 301 cases of assault (up from 211 last year), 98 domestic violence cases (nearly 200% up from 33 the previous year) and 88 road accidents, (up from 75 in 2023).

The city’s MMC for Safety and Security, JP Smith, said the statistical indicators once again point to the use and abuse of alcohol as a key contributing factor.

“We were very concerned about the Easter weekend falling over a month-end period,” he said.

On a more positive note, Smith said the downturn in drunk driving arrests over the weekend was a pleasant surprise.

“Another positive was the number of long-distance public transport operators who participated in Operation Exodus, which saw a 15% increase in vehicles checked compared to last Easter,” said Smith.

The city’s law enforcement agencies made 305 arrests and issued 62,710 fines for various offences, compared to 361 arrests in 2023 and 72,465 fines issued.

Cape Town resident Lulama Mdingana, 46, is not surprised about the rise in assault cases, including domestic violence cases, and hopes that residents will play their part in fighting this scourge.

“Sadly most people don’t report assault cases because they are scared of the perpetrators. I know a few people who were beaten by their boyfriends but they never opened cases,” said Lulama.

She believes that if the country closed places selling alcohol on long weekends a lot could be achieved.

“The worst problem that messes up everything is alcohol. I am not blaming drinking, but most people do all the bad things when they are drunk. We have people who are described as nice until they drink, then they become the opposite of who they are,” said Lulama.

Pictured above: South African police. 

Image source: File


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