S.Africa: Various farmers unions attend Rural Safety Summit

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[These lame events to work with the cops. The Police are more of a nuisance than anything else. Jan]

The Provincial Commissioner of the South African Police Service in conjunction with the MEC for Transport, Safety and Liaison, the MEC for Agriculture, Environmental Affairs, Rural Development and Land Reform, the House of Traditional Leaders, the District Mayor of JTG local municipality, various Farmers Unions, the Community Police Board, the Moral Regeneration Movement, the Premier’s office , local farming communities and other relevant stakeholders and role-players hosted a Rural Safety Summit (RSS).

The RSS was held under the theme “Finding sustainable solutions towards safety in our rural communities”.

The programme of the day commenced with welcoming addresses delivered by both the Provincial Community Police Board Chairperson, Mr Tebogo Malapo and the District Mayor of the John Taolo Gaetsewe (JTG) Municipality, Councillor Queen Mogatle.

The Provincial Commissioner, Lt Gen Koliswa Otola while outlining the purpose of the day, reiterated that the aim of the summit is to respond to the safety needs in rural communities to provide the following:

  1. A safe and secure rural environment and food security.

  2. Social and economic development.

  3. To strengthen the building of relations.

  4. To encourage all stakeholders in rural communities and to engage in joint planning and implementation.

Gen Otola further relayed that with the help of all stakeholders we will come up with resilient strategies to help fight crime in our rural areas.

Messages of support were delivered by the following stakeholders:

National African Farmers Union of SA, Agri-NC,

Provincial Community Police Board, African Farmers Association of SA, Congress of Traditional Leaders, the Moral Regeneration Movement and the NC Liquor and Gambling Board.

In her address , the MEC for Agriculture, Environmental Affairs, Rural Development and Land Reform, Me Mase Manopole elaborated that the supplying of food by farmers who are still struggling to find sure-footing after the Covid-19 Pandemic. And finding sustainable solutions as a collective is to have agriculture, environmental affairs, the development of rural areas and land reform work for us as a province, and the only way this can happen is through improved relations with the community and relevant stakeholders.

The MEC for Transport, Safety and Liaison, Me Nomandla Bloem in her keynote address mentioned how this multi-sectoral approach in discussion of the Rural Safety Plan that was approved during 2022 during the National Forum held in Parys in the Free State.

MEC Bloem emphasized that we should hone into the key focus areas on the 8 Pillars of the Rural Safety Strategy.

The implementation after these discussions is imperative and she does not want lip service but all hands on deck.

The MEC also mentioned besides having police for safety we also need to look at the safety of the police at police stations that is situated in very remote and dangerous areas as the Northern Cape is vast and rural.

She concluded by indicating that anyone who buys stolen goods is also a criminal and should be treated in that fashion. She wished all attendees well during the discussions and deliberations over the next two days to achieve a rich and well-rounded rural safety approach.

The Provincial Head for Pro-active Policing, Brig Irene Kopeledi gave direction in terms of the breakaway commissions and was expected from them while discussing the most relevant Pillars including,

  1. Community involvement and Stakeholder Collaboration (pillar 6)

  2. Improve Policing in Rural and urban/rural areas through the back to basics approach.

  3. Improve governance system for rural areas/Improve Communication and marketing for rural areas (pillar 4)

  4. Improve policing infrastructure in Rural and urban/rural Police stations rural and urban/rural (Pillar 3).

The pillars were discussed in commissions on 25 May 2023 and will continue on Friday, 26 May 2023.

After deliberations, feedback will be provided on day 2 of the summit, to address crime effectively and efficiently in our rural areas and a round up session was done by Provincial Community Police Board Chairperson, Tebogo Malapo.

The final day was concluded by remarks from Gen Otola and closing remarks by MEC Bloem and both laid emphasis on the appointed Rural Safety Steering Committee that must put all the outcomes from the commissions into a working document and see that it is implemented by relevant role-players.

The vision of the National Development Plan (NDP) 2030, in the point; Building Safer Communities, indicates that in 2030, people living in South Africa, feel safe at home, school and at work and they enjoy a community life free of fear and women walk freely in the streets and children play safely outside, also means that the same vision is applicable to rural communities of the country.

The Acting District Commissioner, Brig Baloyi concluded the Rural Safety Summit with a very inspiring vote of thanks.

Source: https://southafricatoday.net/south-africa-news/northern-cape/various-farmers-unions-attend-rural-safety-summit/



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