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85% of police stations understaffed in WC - report

The provincial legislature's standing committee on community safety had asked the commission to investigate staffing shortages in the South African Police Service.

Picture: SAPS

CAPE TOWN – Eight-five percent of police stations in the Western Cape are understaffed.

These include stations in gang and crime-stricken areas.

This has been revealed in a public service commission report which looked into policing resources in the provinces.

The provincial legislature's Standing Committee on Community Safety had asked the commission to investigate staffing shortages in the South African Police Service (SAPS).

The report revealed that in the Western Cape, the police to population ratio has worsened from 1 to 385 in 2016, to 1 to 509 in 2018.

Currently, each officer is now serving on average 124 more residents than in 2016.

In addition, the police to population ratio in the Western Cape is much worse than the national average which is one to 369.

Commissioner Tholumuzi Luthuli said: “Had we gotten some joy with the provincial police commissioner, we would actually maybe have gotten into other areas that are important.”

The Public Service Commission has given the SAPS six months to address staff shortages.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)