On Friday, June 2, 2023, Dr Ivan Meyer, Minister of Agriculture of the Western Cape, and Reagen Allen, Minister of Police Oversight and Community Security of the Western Cape, chaired the quarterly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Commission (IMC) of the Western Cape on safety in the countryside in Elsenburg. Stellenbosch.
A key theme of the meeting was the importance of partnership and cooperation to ensure the security of the citizens of the Western Cape and the partnership and cooperation nature in which the South African Police Forces (SAPS), the Government of the Western Cape (WCG) and the community structures work to promote security in rural areas.
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Minister Meyer said: “The WCG has been working hard to implement the Provincial Rural Security Plan, which requires the Government to create partnerships with the SAPS, Neighborhood and Farm Watches, the private sector and any other structure that can contribute to making our rural communities. .”
Minister Reagen Allen said: “We aim to ensure that every corner of the Western Cape becomes safer. This collaboration between the two departments shows that the Western Cape Safety Plan (WCSP) is coming to life. Our residents must be able to live a better, safer and humane life without fear. Our farm workers and owners must be able to do their jobs to feed the nation and boost our economy without fear of being targeted by criminals.
Meyer added: “Inventory theft is one of the main obstacles for red meat producers, especially in terms of their business operations, productivity and profitability. For this reason, the Western Cape Department of Agriculture (WCDOA) has partnered with the Red Meat Producer’s Organization ( This will allow the RPO to purchase infrared night vision equipment to deter stock theft, which will contribute to safer rural communities and continued employment in the red meat industry.”
Commenting on the recent crime statistics related to cattle theft, Minister Allen commented: “The crime statistics for the 4th quarter, January – March 2023 of the financial year 2022/23, show that the theft of cattle has an overall decrease of 0.7 %. throughout the province. This is largely due to massive cuts in the West Coast district of 65.6% and 21.1% in the Overberg district. The City of Cape Town also had an 8.2% discount. However, we are deeply concerned about the 52% increases in the Cape Winelands, 20% in the Garden Route and 17.2% in the Central Karoo.”
Ministers welcomed the news that an additional 200 neighborhood/farm watches are planned to be set up this year and that the Court Watching Briefs will be extended to all courts in the Western Cape.
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Secretary Meyer emphasized that the WCDoA recently added the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI), the RPO and Philani Training & Development Solution to their list of partners.
Minister Meyer noted: “Rural communities face water safety concerns as most farm workers live on farms and have limited access to public swimming pools with lifeguards. Our partnership with the NSRI brings water security for farmers and rural communities in the province closer to our farm workers.”
“Partnering with Philani Training and Development Solutions and various manufacturers will provide health care skills resulting in the employment of trained community health workers on farms in the Koue Bokkeveld. The program will improve access to health care, including services to prevent disease, manage disease and address the unique challenges faced by farm workers,” added Minister Meyer.
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“As Minister of Agriculture in the Western Cape, with the support of my colleague, the Western Cape Minister of Police Oversight and Community Security, Reagan Allen, I take a firm lead in ensuring that rural communities are safe,” said Minister Meyer. He further added: “We will continue to plan to ensure that farmers, farm workers and rural communities, which are the backbone of our agricultural economy, are safe. The WCG and all of its agencies and partners are doing their utmost to protect farmers, producers, farm workers and our rural communities.”
“We will not stop our efforts to increase security for everyone,” the ministers concluded.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Western Cape Agriculture and Rural Development, South Africa.
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