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Promoting Safety in Khayelitsha

Khayelitsha is a large urban settlement on the outskirts of Cape Town that consistently experiences high levels of violence. For many years community organisations based in Khayelitsha had claimed that policing in this area was inadequate, and that relations between the community and the police and broken down.

Community groups subsequently called for government to intervene. The Western Cape provincial government subsequently established an independent commission of inquiry into policing in Khayelitsha in August 2012. However, this development was opposed by the national government, who took the matter all the way to the Constitutional Court.

In response, UCT and the University of Stellenbosch released a joint statement endorsing the establishment of such a commission of inquiry. SaVI subsequently co-hosted events on this issue, and co-hosted the launch of the 'Safe Communities' campaign, a network of community and advocacy organisations based in Khayelitsha.

The Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of Police Inefficiency and a Breakdown in Relations between SAPS and the Community in Khayelitsha officially began its work in late-2013. SaVI staff and associates provided expert input and testimony to this commission of inquiry in both hearing phases.

- Jeremy Seekings report for the Commission
- Julie Berg, John Cartwright and Guy Lamb testimony
- Lillian Artz testimony
- Catherine Ward testimony

See the UCT Monday Monthly summary of the findings of Commission of Inquiry.

In November 2014 SaVI hosted a summit of police, provincial government and civil society organisations at UCT to devise a detailed strategy for the implementation of the commission’s recommendations.

SaVI is currently a member of the SAPS/civil society research sub-forum on improving safety and improving policing in Khayelitsha, and regularly interacts with the community organisations and police in this area.

SaVI is currently undertaking research into community policing in this area.

Important links

Khayelitsha Commission of Inquiry
Safe Khayelitsha