Saturday, March 21, 2009

Crime Concerns Top LOC Agenda

The Local Organizing Committee is focusing on allaying fears over violent crime in South Africa, and the country plans to boost police numbers nationwide for the 2010 event.

Since South Africa was awarded the tournament four years ago, critics have roused rampant speculation over the country's readiness to host it - not least because of the incidence of crime, with some 50 murders a day.

Rapes and violent robberies have also reached a level which other African nations recently classified as intolerable.

South Africa will deploy 41 000 police officers specifically for the World Cup, all of whom will be sent for specialised training in crowd control.

More generally, a massive recruitment drive since 2004 will increase general police numbers by 55 000 to 200 000, he added, while millions of dollars are being spent on helicopters, body armour and high-tech bomb disabling equipment.

Safety on LOC's top of the agenda
Independent Online
December 15, 2008