South Africa 22.9.2013 08:00 am

The safest place in SA

If you are thinking of retiring to a South African town that’s almost crime-free, there’s a place for you.

It’s called Boetsap, located in the Northern Cape between Kuruman and Bloemfontein.

Rich in fossils, it was once the path Dr David Living-ston used during his treks from Cape Town to the Hinterlands.

It also boasts a crime incident rate of eight, from April 1, 2012 to March 31, 2013 – the lowest in South Africa according to statistics released by the SA Police Service this week.

This included one incident each of robbery with aggravated circumstances, a residential burglary, a non-residential burglary, and four stock thefts. These could be described as fairly “soft” crimes compared to Mitchells Plain in the Western Cape with 91 murders in the last year.

The dorpie’s former top cop, Riempie Botes, remembers his heyday as being second in command at the local police station, a position he held for 13 years since 1995.

He recalls tackling two to three serious incidents per month. This included stock theft, assault and some illegal mining.

“It was wonderful. It was a good job. There were only four policemen stationed at the area during his years there,” he said.

“It was nice because we took the whole thing through, from the arrest to the court. The Criminal Investigation Department was never involved.”

With a population of 1 500 people currently, 1 000 of them were church-going members. It is also the home of former radio and television presenter Edwill van Aarde.

Most of the community farm the land.

“They don’t have a petrol station and there are no bottle stores. You go out of town for those things, then drink at home,” chuckled Botes.

He describes the community as one that “helps each other out”, friendly and hospitable.

The area is typically open savanna Kalahari thornveld, with characteristic camelthorn trees in abundance, according to North-ern Cape tourism.

If you’re planning on a little visit to Boetsap, remember, it also doesn’t have a hotel.

 

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