President Jacob Zuma has announced measures aimed at increasing efforts in the fight against crime and corruption.
In his response to the debate on the State of the Nation Address, the President said that government is strengthening the legislative framework and is also continuing with other measures to further clamp down on crime and corruption.
“The Asset Forfeiture Unit has done a lot of good work in the past financial year,” he noted.
The unit completed 463 asset forfeiture cases worth about R2 billion and also completed 342 freezing orders to the value of R2.8 billion.
“A total of R1.6 billion was paid back to the victims of crime,” said President Zuma. This money was recovered after probing corrupt activities.
The President added that R11 million was recovered in cases where government officials were involved in corruption and other related offences.
He said the Protected Disclosures Amendment Bill was tabled in the National Assembly late last year.
“Its primary objective is to provide protection to whistle blowers so that we can fight corruption better and more effectively.
“The Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Amendment Bill will also be introduced into Parliament,” said President Zuma.
The Bill aims to improve the application of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act in order address practical challenges and close gaps.
Another new law being introduced is the Cyber Crimes and Related Matters Bill, which is scheduled to be introduced into Parliament in the first half of 2016.
Cyber crime can be defined as a criminal activity done using computers and the Internet.
Developments in the South African Police Service
Still on security issues, the President announced two new developments in the South African Police Service.
“As part of the Back to Basics strategy, the Ministry of Police will establish special units to deal with drugs and related transnational crimes as well as violence and the proliferation of firearms in our society.”
The two units, said the President, are the South African Narcotics Enforcement Bureau and the National Bureau for Illegal Firearms Control and Priority Violent Crime.
The units will fall under the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, commonly known as the Hawks.