Withdrawal of cases demoralise police at Lüderitz

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Tuulikki Abraham

Lüderitz-Members of the Police Public Relations Committee (PPRC) are very disappointed to hear that few of the cases investigated by the police went to court for prosecution, as most of these cases were withdrawn, and some witnesses refused to give evidence.

Committee members said the withdrawal of the cases, as well as the refusal by state witnesses to give evidence, would result in an upsurge in crime and therefore PPRC members feel there is a need to sensitize the public to desist from withdrawing criminal cases, while witnesses should be encouraged to testify in court once they have opened cases.

The committee decided to work together with the Lüderitz Town Council and to constantly hold community meetings. This came to light when the committee recently met at the Lüderitz Police Station.

The committee works hand in glove with the community to prevent crime at the harbour town.

The committee further feels it is the responsibility of the public to work with the police to resolve crime.

Chief Inspector of the Lüderitz police Paulus Hamupolo explained that most criminal cases reported at Lüderitz involve assault, general theft, rape, cellphone theft and housebreaking. Most crimes occur during the night at watering holes where drunken patrons occasionally brawl.

He noted housebreaking cases were frequently reported and thus he encouraged homeowners to ensure there is always someone at their house when they leave town.
Hamupolo further advised homeowners to always inform their neighbours about their absence so that neighbours can watch their property. He said a neighbourhood watch could also promote and enhance a sense of security.

The aim of the meeting was to share information on crime in Lüderitz and to foster sound relations between the police and members of the public, and also to discuss alcohol and drug abuse. During this meeting they also discussed the need for parental involvement and control over their children and to enforce disciplinary measures.

Below are some of the crime statistics for Lüderitz:
In 2014 there were 479 cases reported. In 2015 crime slightly increased, as there were 481 cases reported, while in 2016 crime decreased to 438 cases and in 2017 from January until mid-July there were 226 cases reported to the police.

At the same meeting the Lüderitz mayor Hilaria Mukapuli informed the committee members that the town council has identified open buildings belonging to the town council in different locations that could be used as sub-police stations.

Mukapuli said Lüderitz has a Drug Law Enforcement Unit that has been in existence for four months, while the Lüderitz Community Against Subsistence and Alcohol Abuse Committee renovated one building previously owned by a fishing firm.

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