Work towards zero% escape probability: Media Statement by Justice and Constitutional Development and Justice, Crime Prevention and Security (JCPS) Cluster chairperson, Minister Jeff Radebe
12 Aug 2011
I have noted with concern of the escape of a detainee who was due to appear in one of our courts in Pretoria yesterday. The suspect, Bongani Moyo, was meant to appear in court facing one of the most serious and violent crimes, robbery with aggravating circumstances.
In an effort to make our country safe, law enforcement agencies work tirelessly with members of our community to ensure that criminals are removed from the society. It takes courage and a deep sense of patriotism for the communities to work with the Police in turning the tide against crime. Similarly, it takes dedication, integrity and bravery for the Police to hunt and arrest these criminals. These efforts cannot be in vain.
I call on all officials in the criminal justice cluster to exercise caution, diligence and alert at all times when managing our facilities to ensure that escapes similar to the one involving Moyo and all others are brought to end without delay.
I am aware that an investigation both internal and criminal has been initiated into the incident that occurred yesterday. We hope the Police will get to the bottom of this as soon as possible.
It is one of this cluster’s outputs to ensure that we rid ourselves of any corrupt officials. If there are any officials who assisted in the escape that occurred yesterday, they must simply face the wrath of our justice system.
Government has set aside funds intended to improve our facilities to meet acceptable standards of safety and security. These include the installation of the close circuit video cameras and metal detectors at our facilities. We can do only so much to upgrade our physical infrastructure. The human factor is always part of the equation to ensure that our systems become effective.
I intend to bring this matter up at a cluster meeting in order to have protocols introduced regulating conduct of all officials who interact with detainees whilst being processed through the criminal justice system. Where there are inherent systems failures, they must be identified and strengthened without delay. Cases that involve possible negligence by the officials concerned, must receive management attention forthwith.
All of us must fold sleeves and work towards a 0% escape probability once a suspect has been arrested. This is a message that criminals must know that it is real and not a mere slogan.
As government we acknowledge partnerships and efforts by the private sector in contributing towards making our country safe. Crime-line has proven to be one of those successful initiatives. We urge our communities to continue to be the eyes and ears of our law enforcement agencies. We accept and promise to deal with those within our ranks, who could be responsible for and/or collude with those we seek put away.
Moyo must soon be rearrested and those who make escapes of this nature possible, must be flushed out of the system and face consequences of their actions.
Our government will spare no effort in working towards ensuring that “All people in South Africa are and feel safe” (JCPS Custer Outcome 3 of the 12 Government Outcomes).
Tlali Tlali, Spokesperson
Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Development
Cell: 082 333 880
Source: Department of Justice and Constitutional Development
Issued by: Department of Justice and Constitutional Development
12 Aug 2011
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