, JOHANNESBURG, Sep 20 – South Africa’s violent crime, among the highest in the world, fell last year, with murders dropping 3.1 percent to below 43 a day, but sex crimes remained stubbornly high, Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa said on Thursday.
Mthethwa said murders had continued a downward trend since the end of apartheid in 1994 and had been reduced by 27.6 percent from more than 18,000 recorded eight years ago for the year ended in March.
“We are not there yet, but with the participation of all sectors of society, we are turning the tide against crime,” he said, presenting the country’s annual crime statistics.
“We must win the battle against crime, in whatever form it manifests itself. Crime affects all the people of our country across class, gender, religion and colour. It is our common enemy and collectively, we shall defeat this scourge.”
The murder rate fell to 15,609 which averages to just under 43 a day.
“One area that still remains stubbornly high is around sexual offences” – Mthethwa.
“One area that still remains stubbornly high is around sexual offences,” Mthethwa said.
Total sex crimes fell by 3.7 percent to 64,514 and rape by 1.9 percent, from 56,272 last year.
“The decrease should be understood in perspective, that as government we still remain concerned about the conviction rate of criminals who commit such crimes,” he said.
Mthethwa also warned against rising numbers of children being targeted and abused.