Western Cape Appropriation Bill: Community Safety

Community Safety, Cultural Affairs and Sport (WCPP)

18 March 2022
Chairperson: Mr R Allen (DA)
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Meeting Summary

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Appropriation Bill

The Standing Committee on Community Safety, Cultural Affairs and Sport convened in a hybrid meeting with the Western Cape Department of Community Safety (WCDCS) and the Western Cape Liquor Authority to deliberate on Vote 4: Community Safety in the Schedule to the Western Cape Appropriation Bill 2022/23.

The Department established 16 area-based teams in the areas with the highest rate of murder in the province and will continue to work closely with the communities and the Department of Health, who are establishing the Violence Prevention Unit. The Department also enjoyed a good working relationship with its strategic safety partners, including South African Police Services (SAPS), Community Police Forums (CPFs), neighbourhood watches, municipalities, and the communities it serves.

The Premier, in his State of the Province Address, announced the Department of Community Safety will be renamed the Department Police Oversight and Community Safety, as it will be placing extra emphasis on its oversight role, where it will conduct over 151 physical oversight inspections in stations. The Department will focus on rural safety, gender-based violence (GBV) hotspots, and continue to monitor SAPS compliance with the Domestic Violence Act.

The Western Cape Liquor Authority said it remains committed to the policy imperatives and is mindful of its own mandate and the extent to which it is able to contribute to the community safety imperatives which apply to the Western Cape.

The Committee wanted to know how the oversight relationship with SAPS and the LEAP officers from the City of Cape Town is envisaged to work, and if the Department has the staff capacity to do the 151 oversight visits on police stations. The Committee also wanted to understand the significance of the Department changing its name and asked if there are ABTs in the areas of Elsies River, Samora, Manenberg, and Philippi East.

The Department said regarding funding for the LEAP programme, there is an increase in the budget allocation for the programme to continue in the outer years. The Department continues to enjoy a good relationship with SAPS, especially with the station commanders on the ground, and the LEAP officers who are working under the command and control of SAPS. There are ABTs in Samora Machel and Philippi East as new areas on top of the 11 original areas, which makes it 13 areas with ABTs. However, Manenberg and Elsies River are not neglected because there is a Reaction Unit that is made up of Leap members. Regarding the significance of the name change, the Department was given marching orders to place additional emphasis on its oversight work and its constitutional mandate as the Department, so it will focus on oversight inspections over the police units, especially on the GBV hotspots and on rural safety

The Committee supported the Vote. However, in accordance with Rule 90, the African National Congress expressed its minority view to not support the Vote.

Meeting report

The Chairperson welcomed the Members of the Standing Committee and the delegation from the Western Cape Department of Community Safety, led by Acting Minister of Community Safety, Ms Anroux Marais, as well as the Western Cape Liquor Authority, to the meeting. He reminded Members the meeting was to deliberate on Vote 4: Community Safety in the Schedule to the Western Cape Appropriation Bill, 2022. Members of the Standing Committee introduced themselves, and the Minister and Head of Department (HOD) introduced the delegation from the Department present at the meeting.

Chairperson’s Opening Remarks
The Chairperson said he received reports since half past six in the morning, of several incidents of buses being torched in the Philippi and Nyanga area. In the last financial year, several members of the South African Police Services (SAPS) lost their lives and law enforcement officers have been going through difficult times. It has been difficult for many people. He asked for a 30-second moment of silence to reflect on the many circumstances the Department faces in its role of ensuring the safety of communities.

Minister’s Opening Remarks
Ms Anroux Marais, Acting Minister of Community Safety, said she was looking forward to deliberating on the budget for the Department of Community Safety. This is a very vibrant Department. She thanked the Members and officials present at the meeting.

Head of Department (HOD) Opening Remarks
Advocate Yashina Pillay, HOD, Western Cape Department of Community Safety (WCDCS), said the Department is proud of its 13th consecutive clean audit outcome and the renewed service delivery mandate it has undertaken. The Department established 16 area-based teams in the areas with the highest rate of murder in the province, and will continue to work closely with the communities and the Department of Health (DoH), who are establishing the Violence Prevention Unit (VPU). The Department also enjoyed a good working relationship with its strategic safety partners, including SAPS, Community Policing Forums (CPFs), neighbourhood watches, municipalities, and the communities it serves.

The Premier, in his State of the Province Address, announced the Department of Community Safety will be renamed the Department of Police Oversight and Community Safety, as it will be placing extra emphasis on its oversight role, where it will conduct over 151 physical oversight inspections in stations. The Department will focus on rural safety, gender-based violence (GBV) hotspots, and continue to monitor SAPS compliance with the Domestic Violence Act (DVA). The Department will also monitor the Victim Friendly Facilities (VFF) in the upcoming year.

Western Cape Liqour Authority Opening Remarks
Mr Simion George, CEO, Western Cape Liquor Authority (WCLA), said the Authority remains committed to the policy imperatives and is mindful of its own mandate and the extent to which it is able to contribute to community safety imperatives that apply to the Western Cape. It is mindful of violence in the province being occasioned in many instances by the use and consumption of liquor, and its responsibility to regulate in the public interest is uppermost. It appreciates the budget which has been allocated to it to be able to do this.

Deliberation on Vote 4
The Chairperson asked if Members had any questions of clarity from page 127, which is read in conjunction with the Annual Performance Plan (APP), page 137.

Mr R Mackenzie (DA) wanted to know when the Department will be renamed and if it will be effective from 1 April. He asked for clarity on the 776 appropriations. He also wanted to know how the oversight relationship with SAPS and the LEAP officers from the City of Cape Town is envisaged to work. He wanted to know if the Department has the staff capacity to do the 151 oversight visits on police stations.

Mr Mackenzie wanted to know if the funding made available for Professionalised Neighbourhood Watches will be transferred to the neighbourhood watches or if it will be for training these bodies. He asked how often the neighbourhood watches are trained. He also asked for details on the R6.9 million for the resourcing of the Law Enforcement and Reaction Units, as well as a list of the municipalities where the K9 Units are situated. He asked about the type of technology referred to as new technology for safety and security. He also asked the Department to provide the Committee with the report on SAPS police station compliance, if it is available, and wanted to know how big the security support system is in the Department.

Mr M Kama (ANC) wanted to understand the significance of the Department changing its name. He asked if there are ABTs in the areas of Elsies River, Samora, Manenberg, and Philippi East. He said he finds it difficult to understand the LEAP Programme because the safety partnerships are aimed at increasing safety by partnering with community-based organisations. According to his understanding, the sub-programme is for the partnership which should be created with community-based organisations for safety. He wanted to know the location of the LEAP Programme and what informs the basis of the Department’s partnership with the programme. He said the Court Watching Briefs Programme focuses on areas with the highest murder, gang violence, and gender-based violence rates. He wanted to know if this was the case when the programme was established. He also wanted to know if areas that do not necessarily have those high rates would not be assisted by the programme, and if that is the case, he wanted to know if this is informed by incapacity in the office to service the entire province.

Ms D Baartman (DA) said last year, the Central Karoo money which went into Laingsburg municipality was divided into four wards. Out of those wards, councillors from three wards decided to wait until after the elections to establish new Ward Committees to consult on how to use the money going forward. In one ward, the Councillor decided to spend the money before the election. The people who were appointed with the money, which was specifically for safety, were all family members of the Councillor. When she reported the issue to the Minister, the Minister said the Minister would ask the Department to launch an investigation into the matter because the money was not only for the appointment of people, but it was also supposed to go into items to help the Ward become a safer place. She wanted to know how far the Department was in investigating this matter because there was uproar in the community because of it.

The previous transversal framework is coming to an end and a new framework agreement is being established. Ms Baartman wanted to know what this new agreement entails and how the call-off process will work. She also asked if it will be rotational or comparative. She asked for a copy of the new framework agreement, as at the beginning of the new financial year.

Minister Marais said the Department has open communication and a good relationship with the City of Cape Town, this helps the Department a good deal with SAPS oversight.

Adv Pillay said she is unsure how long the name changing process will take because the proposal has to go through certain processes before it goes to the Presidency for approval. Regarding funding for the LEAP Programme, she said there is an increase in the budget allocation for the programme to continue in the outer years. The Department continues to enjoy a good relationship with SAPS, especially with the Station Commanders on the ground and the LEAP officers who are working under the command and control of SAPS. The Department is grateful for the partnership between the three spheres of government, and the Department of Community Safety is very involved in holding this space and ensuring there is good governance in the manner in which interactions with each other take place. That good relationship has produced good results concerning the integrated planning of the priority areas and has resulted in the reduction in the murder rate. The Department will continue enjoying this good relationship, however, there is an understanding that although it is enjoying a cordial relationship, it also has an oversight function over the police. If there are any issues to be highlighted in the 151 police stations oversight visits, the Department will continue to point it out to SAPS and the National Department using the various platforms available to it, such as the HODs Forum, where it engages with national SAPS and local SAPS to improve the services of the police in the Province.

Regarding inspections, the Department proved it can be very agile and adaptable when it took on a service delivery mandate and established area-based teams. It was not in the Department's structure to do this, but the Department was able to reorganise itself and reassign its staff to this end. The Department has not asked for any additional capacity at this stage, as it worked out amongst itself it is going to do 38 inspections per quarter. The Department is already engaging with all its personnel on its refocused direction and will be assigning responsibilities. The Department’s organisational structure was approved in 2009 and the Department has been engaging with OD to change its structure over the years, but due to the commitment and dedication of the staff, it is willing to take on different responsibilities and avail itself without there being a formal change in the job descriptions. The changes are made in the staff’s performance agreement by adding different Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), and the Department has been very fortunate the staff members have been responsive to all the new work the Department is undertaking.

Regarding the neighbourhood watches, she said the R5.7 million covers training and support in the form of starter kits and funding as well. The K9 Units are established in Swartland, Overstrand, the City of Cape Town, and will be rolled out to Mossel Bay in the upcoming year. On the question of compliance and oversight in the police stations, she said the report can be provided to the Committee, as the Department worked closely with SAPS and the Department of Health, especially during the lockdown where the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) protocol was developed for SAPS and resulted in the police stations not being closed for an extended period. Regarding the significance of the name change, she said the Department was given marching orders to place additional emphasis on its oversight work and its constitutional mandate as the Department, so it will focus on oversight inspections of the police units, especially in the GBV hotspots, and will focus on rural safety. There are ABTs in Samora Machel and Philippi East, as new areas, on top of the 11 original areas, which makes it 13 areas with ABTs. Manenberg and Elsies River are not neglected because there is a Reaction Unit which is made up of Leap members.

Part of the LEAP Programme forms part of the bigger ABT methodology where the Department brings in law enforcement, violence prevention, and social cohesion in the local area space where the Department’s partners are community organisations in those areas, regardless if it is CPFs, neighbourhood watches, other community structures, or members in the areas. The LEAP is only a single component of the Department’s response to creating safety with its partners. It is fitting LEAP funds are attached to this programme, as it is not law enforcement in isolation. It is part of a bigger strategy to create safety in communities through violence prevention. It is also the Department’s way of looking at crime prevention through environmental design, and looking at spatial planning and infrastructure.

The Department immediately had its Internal Control Unit investigate the matter at Laingsburg and can make the outcome of the investigation available to the Committee. The Internal Control Unit did not only investigate the funds transfer to the Central Karoo, but it investigated all the district municipalities because it wanted to ensure the money was used for the purposes it was intended for, and that proper fiscal controls were in place for any institution or organisation which receives funding from the Department.

The main focus of the Court Watching Briefs Programme was the murder stations, GBV hotspots, and so on. On occasion when there is a request or a high profile matter, the Department monitored cases throughout the Province.   

Mr David Coetzee, Acting Chief Director: Security Risk Management, WCDCS, said according to the Reaction Units in the City of Cape Town, there are LEAP reaction teams, and the Department learnt a valuable lesson from this. It tried to establish a reaction team not only in the Overstrand Municipality but for the entire District. There will be additional resources available in the Swartland and Overstrand districts to assist SAPS in dealing with crime in the area. Each of those units will have 20 members and will have resources to assist with operations. The K9 units are available in Swartland and Overstrand. These support the City of Cape Town’s K9 Units. It can link to provincial traffic at the weighbridges. There are also resources available for the operations and roadblocks, which provincial traffic does. The other Unit the Department is engaged in is the establishment of a K9 unit at Mossel Bay. In Swartland and Overstrand, two different models were tested, for example, in Swartland, the K9 Unit dogs are leased from a private company and the law enforcement is trained. Overstrand Municipality physically bought the dogs for the K9 units and deployed them. The Department feels it is a better model and it will decide what model to go for in Mossel Bay.

The K9 units were also looked at from a strategic perspective, as in Swartland these are based on the N7 working right up to the Vredendal N7 weighbridge. Overstrand is also focused on the rural safety issues in that District and the poaching of coastal resources. The Mossel Bay unit will look into the Knysna area.

Mr Fred Watkins, Director: Provincial Security Operations, WCDCS, said in terms of the neighbourhood watches, the professionalisation is for funding. Starter kits and training programmes were rolled out by the Department. The Department has a suite of training it develops every year and sends out at the beginning of every financial year to all the structures. It works on a first-come-first-served basis for all the neighbourhood watches. This is to give all an equal opportunity. The suite includes basic first-aid, level 1 first-aid, mediation, conflict management, and financial management for non-financial managers. Over the past year, the Department has held 70 training sessions with different neighbourhood watches in attendance. Regarding technology, the programme is responsible for the integration of technology and physical security in the central business district (CBD), and it is run under the banner of Gov Century. The Department is automating all of its security processes and moving into a paperless system. It was mandated in the Rural Safety Summit to look at how technology is integrated into the rural areas, into one central point, and it is busy with this research.

Regarding the security support team, the Department currently has 64 members in the support teams and these are Western Cape government security employees who work in teams of four on a 24/7 basis. The Transversal Security Framework (TSF) is administered by Provincial Treasury on a rotational value basis. There are currently 18 security service providers on this framework and each rotates as per the value of the call offs, for example, if one company has a R1 million call-off, it would go down to number 18, and the second one would move up to number one as the call-offs happen because it is throughout the province and throughout all 13 departments.

Mr Moegamat Frizlar, Chief Financial Officer, WCDCS, said the security service providers are pre-vetted and pre-qualified according to size, capability, and based on the areas it can service, as well as the level of security standard it can manage. The call-off is based on the value, and if one company gets a contract and the contract is concluded, the company moves to the bottom of the list so each and every service provider in the list gets a chance to provide the service.

Mr Mackenzie wanted to understand what informed the decision to have the K9 units in Swartland, Overstrand, and Mossel Bay municipalities rather than Beaufort West or Plettenberg Bay because by the time a truck gets to those Swartland and Overstrand areas, it means the drugs or any other illegal goods would already be inside the Province.

Ms Baartman asked for the investigation report on Ward 4 in Laingsburg, which relates to the safety money for the District because every Ward received about R1 million and it is unfathomable that the money was not spent on safety. If there are reports on how the districts are spending the money the Department is giving it, there are probably many other constituency heads within the Provincial Parliament who would also like to know how some of this money is spent. There is not always much detail given when the questions are raised on the ground. Regarding the framework agreements, she wanted to know how the operation works when the 18 contractors are appointed. In a small town or rural area like Laingsburg, there are no private security companies. She wanted to know if the security companies are able to assist in areas where there are no private security companies throughout this framework.

Mr Kama asked for clarity on if the HOD was saying there are no ABTs in Elsies and Manenberg. He said the deployment of LEAP cannot be a replacement of ABTs if ABTss have to fulfil the duty of law enforcement, social factors, and prevention strategies. He said he doubts the name change will address what it is intended for because the budget is not spent on the core functions and services of the Department. The only programme with an increased budget is the LEAP Programme, while all other programmes budgets are decreased. The other function of the Department, which is creating safety partnerships and capacitating safety partnerships such as Community Policing Forums, is not funded. He asked for clarity on why the CPFs are not funded and said there is nothing the Department is doing to address its own core functions.

The Chairperson said the Department has a transfer payment agreement with the City of Cape Town and wanted to know if this agreement also applies to Ceres, Malmesbury, and Grabouw, and so on. He also wanted to know if there has been any engagement with SAPS regarding the Community in Blue programme (CIB). He asked for a video of the simulation of how the Overstrand K9 Unit operates and also wanted to know if there will be an establishment of more K9 units in the Province. He wanted to know if the Department is moving away from a desktop analysis into a more physical and in-person analysis where it can go to the regions and build relationships with community members. In this way, it will also help create a sense of inclusivity in the community.

Ms R Windvogel (ANC) wanted to know when the Alcohol-Related Harms Reduction White Paper will be developed into an Act. She also wanted to know which Reaction Units are established, and the municipalities in which these are established, as well as the support provided by the Department to each municipality.

Mr Mackenzie wanted to find out from the Western Cape Liquor Authority how the 5% reduction in its budget will affect its work. He asked the Department to explain the R5 million reduction in Category B and C.

Adv Pillay said the main concern for the Department is the capacity of the local municipalities to render the K9 Unit service and this is what informed its decision. There was already capacity in the Swartland and Overstrand municipalities. The concern raised by Mr Mackenzie regarding the Beaufort West area was noted. It was R100 000 which was given to each ward in Laingsburg, and not R1 million. The Department can make the report and all the safety plans of the district municipalities available to the Committee. The safety plans contain the plan for how it will utilise the funding. The Security Framework covers access control for Western Cape government buildings and facilities among other things. There is a presence in the Laingsburg community and there is an indication this presence can be of assistance.

There are no ABTs established in Elsies River and Manenberg, but there are Reaction Units deployed in those areas. The Department can give the Committee a list of areas where it has ABTs. The ABTs are mainly deployed based on the places with high murder rates in the past years. Regarding the name change and the allocation of the budget across the programmes, she said the Department’s main cause to deliver on oversight is the cost of employment. It is not transfers because the Department uses its own personnel to do the oversights and 43% of the Department’s budget is the cost of employment. The Department had never physically done inspections at all the stations in the past, and it will now utilise its current personnel to do so. Many of the Department’s staff members are trained to do the police monitoring and evaluations and will be doing this. Other department staff will be repurposed to do the oversight inspections.

Regarding the funding of CPFs, she said the Department has not stopped funding it, but it has stopped the Extended Partnership Programme (EPP) funding model. The Department continues to fund CPFs that completed annual general meetings (AGMs) and have received a certificate. If it applies for project funding, the Department also envisaged the CPFs and other structures playing a greater role in the ABT space and funded ABT interventions in communities where there are transversal initiatives. Regarding the CIB, she said this is a programme of the National Department of Police, and the Western Cape Community Safety Act also recognises CPFs and neighbourhood watches. The Department also agreed with the Provincial Commissioner, saying there will not be conflicts in local areas. If there are any incidents of gatekeeping, it should be brought to the attention of the Department. It will immediately engage with the Provincial Commissioner about this.

Regarding policing needs and priorities, she said COVID-19 forced the Department to do desktop exercise, and the policing needs and priorities are a very important component of the Department’s oversight. The Department wants to get its timing right to be able to influence SAPS resources in the province and have the National Department consider the Department’s input on both the inspection and policing needs and priorities, as well as the oversight of FCS units. It wants this to be considered when there is resource allocation and when policies are developed for the Western Cape. Regarding the liquor amendments, she said it will present its first phase amendments to a Cabinet sitting, but it envisages the liquor amendments will be in place by 2023 because there has to be a public participation process. It is currently in the first phase and the Department will be busy with the second phase soon.

Mr Watkins gave an overview of how the operational process works with the Security Framework. He said the Department would contact Provincial Treasury, indicating its need for security at a specific facility. Provincial Treasury would request the Department to do a Safety and Security Risk Assessment, which the Department does at the facility, which entails giving the facility a risk rating from high to low and identifying the type of service needed at the facility. There are four different types of services in the framework, physical security, CCTV monitoring, armed response, and reaction security. After the type of services needed at the facility are identified, logistics regarding the number of personnel needed and where it will be placed at the facility are identified. The report then goes back to Provincial Treasury, and at this point, according to the allocation, DCS processes stop and Provincial Treasury and the respective department communicate with each other and do the call-off. Once the call-off has been made, DCS is notified of which service provider will be providing the service to the facility. DCS starts the oversight process over the service provider, called safety and security evaluations, to see if the service is rendered as per the contract. If DCS notes any lack of service delivery, it will notify the relevant department through a report. It tries to go to every facility at least once every six months.

The Central Karoo does not have any security providers on the framework, but in the initial communication between Provincial Treasury and the relevant department, Provincial Treasury will notify the relevant department if there are no facilities or providers in the specific area. It would need to go through an open tender to acquire security. Once this process has been completed, DCS will do its Safety and Security Risk Assessment and the post-award SSEs to assist the department. 

Ms Windvogel said she did not hear anything about the Reaction Units.

The Chairperson said the Department has a transfer payment agreement with the City of Cape Town and wanted to know if this agreement also applies to Ceres, Malmesbury, and Grabouw, and so on. He said if the Committee receives a date when the K9 Unit in Mossel Bay will be launched, he thinks it will be something the Committee will be interested in attending.

Adv Pillay said the Reaction Units are established in the Swartland and Overstrand local municipalities. Some of the municipalities were unable to spend their full allocation, and because the financial years of the municipalities are not aligned with the financial year of the Department, when the Department pays it money, it is later in the year and the municipalities are unable to spend the money by the end of its financial year. The Department has committed by 1 July every year, which is the municipalities start of its financial year, the Department will ensure it has sent all the money. The municipalities were unable to spend the money, therefore the Department utilised the money to establish Reaction Units. This was not part of the Department’s baseline funding in the previous year.

Mr Coetzee said CPFs can apply for project funding of R5 000, to do projects. Once it has gone through this process and is functioning, it gets access to those funds. The Department also procured a service provider to do training. This year, the training was on meeting skills, and next year it will be on mediation and conflict. The Department speaks to SAPS and the CPFs on a needs basis. Based on this, it procures a provider to do the training. The transfer payments in place are with five district municipalities, and the Department has a business plan with it. There is a TPA that regulates the transfer payment. When the K9 units were established in the first round, the Department looked at Beaufort West and spoke to Provincial Traffic, SAPS, and other role-players, but at this stage, the municipality did not have the capacity to have a K9 unit. The Department assisted Laingsburg and Beaufort West municipalities with law enforcement officers.

Adv Pillay said the Department also transfers funds and has TPA’s with the municipalities where there are Reaction Units and K9 units.

Mr Coetzee said regarding the launch of the K9 unit in Mossel Bay, the first meeting was held on Thursday and the Department still needed to do recruitment and procure the dogs, so it could take up to three or four months to get to the launching stage.

Mr George said according to the five percent reduction, there is a reduction in accordance with the revised estimates, so although there is a slight increase, in real terms it is not an increase. Regarding if it will impact service delivery, the Department still budgeted on what was planned according to the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF). The projects specified in the increase were the online application platform and the walk-in centre the Department is developing for the application process.

The Chairperson said the Committee is looking forward to visiting the offices of the Western Cape Liquor Authority soon. Members of the Committee can ask questions of clarity on the rest of the vote, including the annexures.

Ms Baartman said the Youth Safety Ambassadors allocated to the municipalities of Beaufort West and Laingsburg reached out to her to ask if their contracts are going to be renewed. Since the project is going ahead within the Budget Vote, she wanted to know what the plan was after the end of the current financial year, going into the new financial year. The programme is useful in communities, especially when young people have not decided what to do after completing Grade 12. The programme has assisted in ensuring these young people stay off the streets. Assisted schools, neighbourhood watches, and CPFs also have more capacity because of it. In Laingsburg, law enforcement officers spoke with the former MEC in the municipality in October or November last year, and the concern was getting the law enforcement officers' contracts through the municipality. The way the contracts were structured was such that SAPS in Laingsburg was complaining it does not have any legislative authority to work with the law enforcement officers. SAPS asked if the contracts could be amended so SAPS is able to be linked with the law enforcement officers.

Mr Kama said there is a decrease in the budget allocation for the Safety Promotions sub-programme. He wanted to know what informed the decrease, in light of the rise in attacks of law enforcement officers and SAPS members. He also wanted to know the reasons for the increase of over 200% for consultants and professionals. He asked for an update on the policy development of the LEAP Programme because the Committee previously raised an issue about the difficulty of exercising oversight for the LEAP Programme. He said, for example, someone posted about a team of about 25 vehicles of law enforcement officers who went to evict one person who had already moved out of the property of Communicare. There have been concerns about law enforcement officers and he asked for details of the role the Department played with the LEAP Programme.

Mr Mackenzie said the allocation in the main appropriation increased from R1.1 million to R1.4 million, the Consultants and Professional Services increased from R350 000 to R1.2 million, and the Agency Support and Outsourced Service which was R51 million, decreased to R46 million, and now R33 million. He asked what the money is being spent on. He also asked for clarity on what is referred to as Inventory and Other Supplies. He asked for an explanation of the R34 million increase to R38 million on Property Payments.

The Chairperson asked the Department to elaborate on the amount allocated to job creation.

Adv Pillay said the safety ambassadors and the law enforcement officers are not the same. The law enforcement officers are employed by the municipalities and the safety ambassadors were a once-off allocation from Provincial Treasury for the work opportunities to be provided to the youth. There were approximately 1 000 safety ambassadors appointed, provided with a work opportunity, and were mainly placed in schools across the province, however, the Department did not receive another allocation from Provincial Treasury to continue with the programme. The programme is ending this month. The Department will continue with its work opportunity for Chrysalis youth and place these youth in communities. The Department pays for the stipend for up to two years. The Chrysalis Academy has created youth hubs in several areas across the province to provide further support to the youth. At the Chrysalis Academy, the training provided included job readiness and other training to empower the youth.

The reduction in safety promotion is a result of the hotspot project separate from the ABTs and others, which was also a year-long contract and has also ended. The Department advertised five contract posts and three permanent posts in the bulletin on the morning of the current meeting because there is a need for capacity. On 24 January there was a meeting hosted by the Premier with the National Minister and the Executive Mayor of the City of Cape Town, where it was decided that the three spheres of government will work together to look at the gap of oversight. The province was tasked to coordinate the meeting and it was very fruitful. The three spheres are looking at options between changing the Independent Police Investigative Directorate Act (IPID) or the Municipal Systems Act to assist, because the Department was given a legal opinion saying it cannot include oversight over law enforcement according to the Community Safety Act. There is an intention from all the role-players to address the gap in law enforcement oversight and there will be an in-person follow-up meeting. The discussion will be taken forward. There is a need for law enforcement officers, but a legislative framework for oversight must be created.

Mr Frizlar, CFO, said the 15% reduction in advertisements from the previous year has to do with the Department moving away from advertisements and communications relating to COVID-19, and focusing more on the business of the Department. According to the Consultants and Professional Services, the increase is for research that will be undertaken within the Safety, Information and Research Directorate, where there is an anticipated uptake in research projects. The decrease in the Agency and Outsourced Services is a result of the reduction in the YSAP Programme where the Department is looking to outsource its Youth Work Programme in the coming year. The Inventory and Other Supplies refers to inventory, clothing material, and accessories. It is also for equipment for the Neighbourhood Watch Programme, as when the neighbourhood watches get accredited, the neighbourhood watches will get issued with a toolkit and some clothing which includes sweaters, bibs, and jackets. The Department allocates its spending for security contracts under Property Payments.

Mr Mackenzie wanted to know what the Department is advertising, as it is spending R5 million. He wanted to know if the end of the safety ambassadors at the end of this month has been communicated to the individuals. He also wanted to know what the EPWP entails and if some of the safety ambassadors whose contracts are ending will be transferred to this programme. He understood the Property Payments but he wanted to know what the increase of R4 million was for. According to the Inventory and Other Supplies, he wanted to know if it was part of the R5.9 million the Department spoke about earlier in the meeting.

Mr Kama wanted to know if there was a difference between a LEAP officer and a law enforcement officer. According to his understanding, both report to the same structure and the same Chief. A lot of the budget is spent on LEAP officers and he wanted to know if the position is being complemented.

The Chairperson said it might be useful to get a briefing of the performance of the officers in the last three months and the activities undertaken.

Ms Baartman was devastated to hear the Youth Safety Ambassadors programme is ending because when a programme of such magnitude is created, there needs to be an exit strategy. She said she does not think the Department has an exit strategy for this programme because one cannot employ someone for a year on a contract basis and then the programme ends. Some of these young people do not have jobs to go into after the programme. Another example of a programme like this one is the Presidential Youth Employment Initiative, where employment opportunities are created but an exit strategy is needed. In comparison to the R400 million transferred to the Metro, it would be a drop in the bucket to assist about 1 000 youth safety ambassadors across the province. If objective criteria could be applied by moving the programme back to the Department and attaching an exit strategy to phase the programme out over two financial years, so when the youth exit the programme, the youth would be moving into another opportunity, this could go a long way.

Ms Windvogel said she would like to hear a response to Mr Kama’s question about the 25 law enforcement cars going to evict one person. She also wanted to know if the office of the Western Cape police ombudsmen is equitably staffed, and she wanted to know the number of high profile investigations undertaken.

Ms P Lekker (ANC) wanted to know if there are terms of references for the ABTs or if there are any documents that indicate the ABT's role. She also asked for a quarterly report on this. It is unfair to processes of Parliament and financial accountability to have money allocated to something for which there is no oversight. She said the issue of the LEAP officers needs to be investigated concerning finances and accountability.

The Chairperson assured Ms Lekker the Standing Committee does conduct oversight over the Department and asked the Department questions related to accountability, concerning LEAP, and SAPS.

Adv Pillay said Mr Kama is right about the uniforms worn by LEAP officers and law enforcement officers, but the DCS funds the LEAP Officer Programme and not the Law Enforcement Programme. During the lockdown, the LEAP officers were used for other purposes but this is no longer the case. LEAP officers are mainly based in the murder stations and are working under the command and control of SAPS. The areas in which the Leap officers are deployed are Delft, Khayelitsha, Mitchell’s Plain, Harare, Bishop Lavis, Hanover Park, Atlantis, Gugulethu, Kraaifontein, Mfuleni, Nyanga, Philippi East, and Samora Machel. The Reaction Unit is not a static response unit and it is made up of the 66 members who are moved around, unlike the 13 areas which have static LEAP officers. Elsies River and Manenberg are not part of the 13 areas, as these are not part of the 13 areas with the highest murder rate. The Reaction Unit can move throughout the City in any area, but there has to be an agreement between the HOD of DSC and the ED of the City of Cape Town before there is any deployment in any other area. If there is a deployment of the Reaction Unit in any other area, it is because there is a flare-up in the area, not of evictions or invasions, but linked to crime in the specific area, specifically murder or gang violence.

Regarding oversight, she said the Department has legislative frameworks for oversight of SAPS and municipal police services, but there is no legislative framework for the law enforcement oversight, which the Department is addressing with the national Minister’s Office. This is not only a gap in the Western Cape, but also nationally. The Department has a transfer agreement and a business plan with the City of Cape Town and the City has to report to the Department on an ongoing basis regarding its expenditure on operations. She agreed with the Chairperson of the Committee, saying it would be good for the Department to present to the Standing Committee in a separate meeting on the work done by the LEAP officers and the Department’s role in managing and monitoring the situation where these officers are deployed on a daily basis. The same could be done for these officers' actions, together with SAPS. None of the LEAP officers are engaged in activities such as evictions and these officers have to account for all the funds paid to them. The City of Cape Town must account to the Department, and the Department must account to Provincial Treasury. The City must account to the Department and provide its expenditure reports and operational reports. The Department also included a financial analysis report to its Annual Performance Plan (APP) this year, which is a new indicator in its APP.

According to the ABTs, in the current year’s APP, the ABTs are reflected in many indicators and the Department can also provide a presentation on the ABTs to the Standing Committee, but there are no funds were transferred to the ABTs. The 25 vehicles which went to evict one person were not from the Leap Programme and she said she is not aware of the particular incident Mr Kama referred to, but it must have been a City of Cape Town operation, which is independent of the Department's LEAP deployment. According to the number of staff and high profile investigations of the Ombudsman, she asked to provide the information after the meeting as the Department did not have the numbers readily available and would need to request the information from the Ombudsman.

The safety ambassadors were informed this was a programme that would run for a limited period of a year. The Department asked Provincial Treasury for any additional allocation to extend the programme, but it was unable to provide this due to a limited budget. Letters were sent to every safety ambassador, as well as the institutions where these ambassadors were placed. The Department also encouraged the schools and the municipalities where the ambassadors served to continue paying the ambassadors a stipend, as it was not formal employment but a work opportunity where a stipend was paid. Some of the municipalities are taking up some of the safety ambassadors and the Department has asked the municipalities to utilise some of the funding allocated to it, where the municipalities want to retain the safety ambassadors. The Safety Ambassador Programme is also similar to the work opportunities the Department provides through the Chrysalis graduates, as it is also a work opportunity linked to the Expanded Public Works Programme which cannot run for more than two years. It is a stepping stone and is not meant to be formal long-term employment. It is meant to give the youth some exposure and experience so the youth can position themselves for other employment prospects.

The training the safety ambassadors were exposed to included personal development training, workplace readiness, skills training, interview skills, CV preparation, personal mastering, and trauma releasing, as many of the youth have experienced trauma.

Mr Fritz said the neighbourhood watch supplies and the toolkits are included in the R5.9 million allocated to the Neighbourhood Watch Programme. The increases on the Property Payments were for the security contracts and the increase is an annual legislated increase through the oversight body of the security industry, which comes through on an annual basis.

Ms Ansaaf Mohamed, Director: Strategic Services and Communication, WCDCS, said there are many elements which make up the advertising, one of which is the Monthly Departmental Radio Programme, which includes thematic and topical issues. Most of the advertising is social media-based and audio-visual based, and none of it is printing unless it is internally generated. The Department also focuses on campaigns such as Gender-Based Violence advocacy and information, and some campaigns focus on Youth Month, Women’s Month, Human Rights Month, 16 Days of Activism. This year and last year the Department did not focus on any human rights issues, but there was a greater focus on the 16 Days of Activism and Women’s Month. This also includes compliance ads, human resources ads, tenders, gazettes, policy issues if there was any input made in relation to Acts that require certain compliances, it also includes advertising for the Western Cape Liquor Authority.

The Chairperson wanted to know if the Department could provide a list of the safety ambassadors to ascertain if any of them are already looking for employment elsewhere since the safety ambassadors would have already known that the programme is coming to an end.

Adv Pillay said the Department was concerned about creating an expectation for the safety ambassadors, by reaching out and asking if the safety ambassadors are looking because the programme is ending. The municipalities contacted the Department to ask if the ambassadors can remain there, but the Department thought it would be unfair to choose some and not others and it encouraged the municipalities to utilise unspent funds to contract directly with the ambassadors. The Department was also concerned about creating a perception that it was not doing the same for the Chrysalis graduates because these graduates also end up in the same situation where the graduates know their time in the programme comes to an end.

Acting Minister Marais said the Department can provide a list of the opportunities it gave to the ambassadors to apply for. Some of them are in the Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport (DCAS) for the Year Beyond Programme.

Mr Kama said the Western Cape Liquor Authority is always facing challenges with budgetary constraints and noted in 2021/22 financial year, its Adjusted Appropriation was R48 million, and now it is down to R45 million. He wanted to know how this will impact the entity regarding its capacity to conduct inspections, as timeously as expected. He wanted to know the new technology being referred to concerning Safety and Security, and if the Department is looking at forming partnerships around the CCTV Programmes in the City. He also wanted to know if the City’s CCTV system informs the City when one of the cameras is not working. Lastly, he wanted to know the budget amount which will be allocated to this programme.

Adv Pillay said the reduction in the Western Cape Liquor Act’s (WCLA’s) Adjusted Appropriation is only because the R4.4 million was already paid in the Adjustment Budget.

Mr Watkins said the Department is planning to integrate the CCTV programme into physical security. In the CBD, apart from the City of Cape Town, three control rooms are monitoring 44 of the Western Cape government buildings. The City of Cape Town has the mandate for the public space, but the Department is looking at developing an emergency centre and is in discussions with the Disaster Management Centre to activate this centre where all the CCTV from the rural areas and the CCTV of the Department can be integrated. There are different systems and integration is not so easy, but the Department has found if it is an internet-based system, then only a cooperation agreement with other users would be required to create a single central point.

The other aspect is communication, as CCTV monitoring is only one face without a proper response to what has been noticed, and the Department is also trying to establish a centralised communication or radio communication with all the districts. There is R6 million allocated to this project in the budget and it includes machinery and equipment.

The Chairperson said he did not receive any written request for public input nor any written correspondence.

Ms Lekker wanted to know how many young people are going to lose their jobs at the Youth Safety Ambassadors programme.

Adv Pillay said the maximum number was approximately 1000 young people and the contracts have already ended, but there were at times people who left and were replaced by new people, so the exact number is not clear. She said she was told the actual number is 926.

Acting Minister’s Concluding Remarks
Acting Minister Marais thanked the Standing Committee for the constructive oversight over the Department of Community Safety and reassured the Committee the Department is committed to creating safer communities and combating crime in communities. She also thanked her delegation from the Department and the Western Cape Legal Authority for availing themselves to be in the meeting and engaging the Committee.

Mr Mackenzie made the official vote of thanks on behalf of the Standing Committee.

The Chairperson allowed the Department and the Western Cape Liquor Authority representatives to exit the meeting and the Committee proceeded with its business.

Requests for Information
Mr Wassiem Mathews, Committee Procedural Officer, read the information requests from the Committee.

Ms Windvogel asked if the City of Cape Town can be invited by the Committee to account for the LEAP Programme. She also asked the Committee if it can try to agree on a programme to strengthen accountability measures over the LEAP Programme.

The Chairperson agreed with Ms Windvogel and said in the next Community Safety meeting, the Committee will also table its Draft Programme for the year. Various members have indicated unannounced meetings, and the briefing from the City of Cape Town will be added.

Mr Mackenzie asked for a list of the accredited neighbourhood watches, a list of the neighbourhood watches the Department is going to fund in this financial year, as well as a list of the valid CPFs the Department is funding.

Ms Lekker asked the Department to provide a business plan and the financial analysis for the LEAP Programme since its inception. She also asked for the documentation including the terms of reference and financial analysis for the ABTs.

Mr Kama asked for the list of the neighbourhood watches to be sent to all the Members of the Standing Committee.

Resolutions/Actions
Mr Mackenzie supported the Vote.

Ms Baartman supported the Vote.

Mr Kama said according to Rule 90, the ANC wishes to express its minority view not to support the vote.

The Standing Committee on Community Safety, Cultural Affairs and Sport, having deliberated on the subject of Vote 4: Community Safety in the Schedule of the Western Cape Appropriation Bill [B2- 2022], referred to the Committee per Standing Rule 188, reports it supports the Vote. In accordance with Rule 90, the African National Congress expressed its minority view to not support the Vote.

Committee minutes were considered and adopted.

The meeting was adjourned.

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