Police Minister Bheki Cele has described the country’s murder rate as ‘scary’, saying it borders on a war zone.

Cele says police have to work to bring down the number of murders. He says the figure is now over 20 000. Over 50 people are murdered in South Africa daily.

“We are on 20 000 today, SAPS have dropped the ball. I told SAPS I can never again come here to present these stats and worse than this. Crime stats in this financial year are nothing to write home about. It doesn’t matter what figures you put but if you can’t deal and control the murder cases we are not bringing any joy to the SA people. It looks like the figure this time, people are dying 57 a day. That’s how South Africans are murdered. It borders close to a war zone – when there is peace and no war in SA”.

Cele, who took over as minister from Fikile Mbalula in February this year, says police have to work to bring down the number of murders.

The last crime stats, released in October last year, showed that murders had increased 1.8%.

The minister is appearing before the Portfolio Committee on Police in Parliament for the unveiling of the stats for 2017/18.

Last year’ stats showed that murders had increased to just below 19 000.

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