Unprecedented 100 new Law Enforcement officers deployed to make CBD safer for all

24 Aug 2022 in Where We Govern

On Wednesday, 24 August, Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis and Alderman JP Smith officially welcomed the 100 officer deployment to Cape Town’s Central Business District (CBD) – the officers have been on active duty since 1 July.

‘The CBD is the heartbeat of the city’s economy, and every day, tens of thousands of residents pour into this hub from every corner of the city to come to work, trade, or attend schools and colleges. It is important to us that all of these Capetonians are able to go about their day with a feeling of safety.

‘We want the CBD to be a place where everyone can feel safe walking to and from the bus stop or the train station, and where women feel safe visiting restaurants and bars at night. The rise in petty and violent crime in the CBD has left people feeling vulnerable. That is why we took the decision to budget for an unprecedented Law Enforcement deployment of 100 new officers to the CBD alone. These officers have undergone their training, they’ve been equipped, and they are now on duty. The difference they are making, even in the first few weeks of their deployment, has been felt by many.

‘This deployment will give the City a 24-hour policing presence in the Cape Town CBD. This is a huge deployment, and we are confident it is going to make a difference. If you come to work in the CBD from one of our LEAP deployment areas, you now will feel safer at home, and feel safer when you come to work, because of what we are doing to make the whole city safer,’ said Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis.

The City has allocated a record R5,4 bn safety budget this financial year, as highlighted once again by the Mayor in his most recent Council speech: http://bit.do/fU7Pr

‘The many brave and hard-working men and women of SAPS are forced to do more with ever-decreasing resources from an institution that is under-resourcing those who are responsible for keeping us safe. Over the last five years, SAPS resources have decreased by 71 percent at police stations in the province. The City of Cape Town has taken it upon itself to fill the gaps left by diminishing SAPS resources, so that residents can feel safer. However, there is so much more we could do to help start winning the war against crime – the first being given more comprehensive policing powers,’ added Mayor Hill-Lewis.


The Cape Town Central policing precinct recorded increases in a number of crime categories in the latest quarterly statistics.

Types of contact crime April – June 2021 April – June 2022 Case difference %  increase
Common robbery 158 255 97 61.4%
Robbery with aggravating circumstances 88 165 77 87.5%
Assault GBH 23 28 5 21.7%

‘The statistics are of concern, and illuminate the importance of this CBD deployment. In addition to the boots on the ground to improve visible policing, this deployment coincides with a pilot project, designed to enhance the coordination and use of technology and resources between our three enforcement services. In an ever-changing world, the combination of a physical policing presence and force multipliers like improved technology and full exploitation of the data and analyses that comes with that technology becomes critical. We’ve established a temporary fusion centre, using our Emergency Policing Incident Command platform, or EPIC, to enhance efforts on the ground, and will use the lessons from this pilot to replicate the project city-wide in the future,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, Alderman JP Smith.

In the three weeks leading up to 15 August, Law Enforcement officers in the CBD effected 184 arrests for various crimes.

The impact of these additional officers will not yet feature in the statistics which only measure crime until the end of June.

The City is confident, however, that its efforts will help improve safety in the CBD in the coming months.