“Nearly 20 years since freedom, violent crime is still unacceptably high and it is the poorest who are often affected worst,” Agang SA political director Moeketsi Mosola said in a statement.
“Failures by the [African National Congress] government in providing quality education and in creating jobs continue to trap millions in poverty without hope. This is the root cause of crime and it is a betrayal of the values of the struggle.”
Mosola said serious crime could be tackled only by ensuring people did not go hungry, that they could earn money to sustain their families, and that their children could get quality education.
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa released the 2012/13 crime statistics in Pretoria on Thursday. Mthethwa said the number of murders had increased by 0.6 percent in the past financial year. However, this figure was down 16.6 percent over the past four years, and 27.2 percent over the past nine years.
Mosola said South Africans deserved better and needed a criminal justice system that ensured criminals were caught and prosecuted.
The police should be commended for the difficult job they did and the reduction in other types of crime, but they also deserved better.
He said they deserved better leadership, training, and equipment, and more officers were needed.
“Crime reports should be published at least monthly, enabling the public to be better informed about crime trends, and to be able to hold the police and political leadership accountable,” Mosola said.
Communities and police needed the latest information about crime trends in their area to work together to combat crime, he said.