2007-10-23 : Hijacking victims named


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2007-10-23 : Hijacking victims named

Postby GOSA » Tue, 2007-11-06 07:41

Hijacking victims named
Witness Tue, 23 Oct 2007

By Sphumelele Mngoma; Nathi Olifant

Security expert has advice on avoiding this terrifying crime

POLICE have identified the two men who were murdered and dumped
on the side of the road near Georgetown on Sunday as Mbinewane
Thamsane (26) and Masizane Mtfhaefha (23).

The two became the latest victims of hijackings in
Pietermaritzburg when their maroon Polo sedan was hijacked as
they were visiting a female friend in the area.

The vehicle has since been found abandoned in the city and one
arrest has been made.

SAPS spokesman Senior Superintendent Henry Budhram said no
further arrests have been made, but investigations are

Meanwhile, as police statistics confirm that hijackings are on
the rise in KZN, a security expert has given advice on how to
avoid becoming a victim.

Last year, KwaZulu-Natal experienced 3 077 hijackings, but this
year the figure shot up to 3 562, an increase of 485 or over 10%,
according to crime statistics released this year.

A senior researcher with the Institute for Security Studies
(ISS), Dr Johan Burger, said trying to avoid being hijacked is
difficult, but people can "minimise the chances of getting

Burger said the best possible way to counter hijacking is for
communities to get involved in effective policing and be aware of
new trends.

"Our communities need to be part of effective policing that will
help one know about their surroundings and recent incidents with
their trends."

Burger said if people are aware of a crime trend like hijacking
that is happening in the area and if they take part in sector
policing, the more skills they are likely to attain.

"By participating in these sector policing initiatives, people
know what to look for and are able to spot individuals who act
out of the ordinary. They will know that some secluded areas are
to be avoided at all costs, by taking precautions even if it´s
inevitable going to that area," he said.

Burger said there are a number of things one can do to develop
awareness. He said an organised policing system has proven to be
very effective, like making use of neighbourhood watches. He
pointed out, however, that not every area can afford this.

"That´s why there is a thing called urban and rural policing.
People should not shy away from taking part in the police-reserve
system, because those volunteers have a big role to [play in]
transmitting vital information to their communities. It´s all
about being on par with trends, otherwise this will continue
unabated," he said.

The ISS also advises motorists that when approaching driveways in
their homes they should caution against delaying opening their
gates. Remote-controlled gates are encouraged, as well as good
lighting and an awareness of the neighbourhood.

Published: 23 October 2007
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