Khayelitsha: Dropped cases in spotlight

The commission found violent crime cases were not pursued due to incomplete probes.

The commission found violent crime cases were not pursued due to incomplete probes.

CAPE TOWN - A significant number of cases involving violent crimes are either withdrawn or struck off court rolls because of incomplete police probes or failure to bring dockets to court.

This was an issue raised by the Khayelitsha Commission of Inquiry's evidence leader during the public hearing on Thursday.

Western Cape Premier Helen Zille established the commission in August 2012 to investigate allegations of police inefficiency in the township and an alleged breakdown in the relationship between police and the community.

During their investigation, the commission's two evidence leaders found a significant number of cases that were either withdrawn or thrown out of court as a result of police not doing their work properly.

The commission's Thembalihle Sidaki says these cases included sexual offences, murder, robbery and driving under the influence of alcohol.

He wants police to explain why this situation has persisted.

"We shall endeavour, during these proceedings, to obtain clarity from the relevant officials as to why this is happening."

Several civil society organisations also raised this issue.

Lawyer Ncumisa Mayosi, who represents several non-government organisations, says dockets are often lost.

On Wednesday, commissioners Justice Kate O'Regan and advocate Vusi Pikoli visited areas affected by vigilante killings, violent crime and gangsterism as part of their inspections in-loco.

Watch EWN's 2012 report below on the spate of mob justice killings which prompted the setting up of the Khayelitsha Commission of Inquiry.