Crime cannot be conquered by the efforts of the police alone. Partnership between by various stakeholders from the community and the police are crucial in curbing the scourge of crime in our society. The South African Police Service together with Tracker South Africa have demonstrated that a meaningful partnership between business and the police can yield positive results.
On Wednesday, 30 September 2015 at a function held in Durban, the Tracker Provincial awards was held. The purpose of these awards is to recognize those individuals and teams who have excelled in vehicle tracking and recoveries.
Mr Ronn Knott-Craig, the Executive for Operational Services from Tracker lauded the performance of law enforcement who on a daily basis are in the coal-face of fighting crime. He also emphasised that the level of crime cannot be brought down by police alone. Everybody needs to put their shoulder on the wheel and be a part of the solution. “If we are truly to turn the tide on crime, we need holistic action. From members of the public, the media, community forums, reservists, big business, private security companies and government – we need to come together in new and meaningful ways,” he said. Brigadier Aaron Harry , the Provincial Head of Visible Policing who represented the Provincial Commissioner at the event, acknowledge the achievement by police officials but emphasized that more integrated operations should be conducted which would target syndicates and make a dent into vehicle theft and hijacking crimes.
In the Individual Awards category, amongst nine (9) nominees, Constable Dalisu Cyprian Hlophe from the Umlazi Tactical Response Team was the overall winner. He had recovered in excess of 75 Tracker fitted vehicles and affected at least 10 arrests and recovered 4 firearms firearms during 2014/15. In addition, he had also recovered 22 non Tracker fitted vehicles as a result of his daily duties. There were also a large quantity of property recovered by this member during the course of his tracks. Constable Hlophe is truly committed to his job and he is the first line of defense in the Durban South Region. He also takes it upon himself to train new members and members that are not familiar with the Tracker system. Constable Hlope has been nominated as the KZN individual winner and will represent KZN in the National Tracker Awards Ceremony.
The KZN Integrated Vehicle Task team took the first prize amongst five nominees in the Unit Awards category. This unit operates under the mandate of the Provincial Head: Visible Policing with a directive to combat vehicle theft and hijacking in an integrated manner. The Integrated Task Team boasts a compliment of five (5) Vehicle Tracking Unit’s and six (6) members from the various law enforcement agencies, including the Durban Flying Squad, the Durban Metropolitan Police Service, Road Traffic Inspectorate, Montclair Visible Policing, Wentworth Visible Policing and Isipingo Visible Policing. This unit has recovered in excess of 129 Tracker fitted vehicles and affected at least 25 arrests as well as recovered 10 firearms in the year 2014/15. In addition, this unit has also recovered 43 non Tracker fitted vehicles as a result of daily duties. A conservative value of vehicles recovered by this unit is estimated at R12.5 million. Although limited in terms of manpower and resources, members attached to this team always come through when they receive a report of a stolen or hijacked vehicle.
The KwaZulu-Natal Police Commissioner, Lieutenant General Mmamonnye Ngobeni applauded the members for their performance in combatting vehicle thefts and hijackings. “Well done to the members who received awards and we wish Constable Hlophe and the Integrated Vehicle Task Team all the best in the National Awards Ceremony. It is only through such integrated partnerships that we can win the war on crime,” she said.