Given the run around by police

Sandra Todd, Muizenberg

On Saturday October 7, I called Muizenberg police station in connection with a tenant on the property that I am living on who was smoking buttons in his room while his 13-year-old son was sitting in the room.

First call was to 10111 – at 6.01pm – who put me through to Muizenberg police station. I spoke to James, who answered the phone.

Second call made at 6.04pm to MTN 112 who put me through to Muizenberg police station. Again I spoke to James.

Third call – at 6.31pm – was to the police station where I again spoke to James.

On my fourth call, at 7.44pm, to the Muizenberg police station, I again spoke to James.

My fifth call was to City of Cape Town law enforcement (ref no 1000115176), at 7.51pm. They logged a call to Muizenberg police station.

My sixth call was to Childline (08000 55555) who said they were going to contact Muizenberg police station to come out to the house.

All of the above told me that the police would be out to come and sort the issue out. By Monday October 9, police were yet to attend Saturday’s issue.

On that day, I called Muizenberg police station to get the police out to the property as a vehicle had been broken into outside and a radio was stolen.

On my first call, at 2.44pm, I spoke to Warrant Officer Arrison who said that he would get the police to come to the house.

On my second call at 5.31pm, I spoke to Officer Delubonga (sp)who said that she would get hold of the police van to see if the complaint had been handed over to them, which it had been and she then called me back to let me know that as soon as the 6pm shift change was done the police would be here. By 7.38pm they had still not arrived.

Why does it take the police so long to attend to anything in Muizenberg? (And) we are wasting our time with the Muizenberg Improvement District (MID). Why not just take the money that is being paid to the MID and pay a security company who will
keep us safe? And every time you phone the police station they always say that there is only one van but if you go up to the police station there are at
least three vans in the yard and staff all
having a long chat and laugh in the charge office.

* Muizenberg SAPS spokesman, Captain Stephen Knapp, responds:

Muizenberg SAPS can confirm that a statement was taken from the complainant in this regard. A 101 internal complaint has been opened and is under investigation to determine the alleged failure of Muizenberg SAPS to attend to the complaint.

Muizenberg SAPS would, however, like to stipulate that 190 complaints were received between October 5 and 11,
with an average response time of 15 minutes.

We will, however, not tolerate poor service delivery and will investigate every incident reported.

* Muizenberg Improvement District (MID) chair, Marion Wagner, responds:

The MID understands that there is great frustration from some members of the public and the community when dealing with the SAPS (charge office). It is, however, important to put the MID into context in terms of the value add for the levy that property owners pay to the City. The MID offers top-up City of Cape Town services within public space, and crime prevention and investigations are the responsibility of National Government services, ie SAPS. We encourage residents to report incidents of service inefficiency to the station commander and the Western Cape Police Ombudsman. Where a child is at risk, the Department of Social Development can be contacted on 0800 220 250 and concerns about problem tenants is of a private nature, which the landlord or tenant needs to address through the relevant legal steps.

It is unfortunate that the Improvement District is often
referred to as wasting our time when
residents are
desperate for service delivery and fail to hold to account the very structures that government has
put in place, legislatively, to ensure the safety and security of all, such as policing and social development services.

For more information on what the MID is about, visit the website at http://www.mid.org.za/