Police Deputy Minister Bongani Mkongi on Monday officially handed over the Mount Road Cluster Operational Command Centre to the Provincial Commissioner of the Eastern Cape, Lieutenant General Liziwe Ntshinga.
On 24 March 2016, a national police intervention aimed at countering gangster-related crime and violence was formally launched in Port Elizabeth’s Northern suburbs of Gelvandale and Bethelsdorp.
The intervention was dubbed Operation Lockdown.
Operation Lockdown introduced a focused six-month intervention aimed at winning the trust of the community while at the same time, clamping down on gang-related activities such as drug dealing, intimidation, violent crime including murder and attempted murder and the proliferation of unlicensed firearms.
The Mount Road Cluster implemented and piloted the Operational Command Centre (OCC) concept during this period which focused on intelligence-led policing.
The OCC is the point from which intelligence-led crime prevention and combatting operations are initiated, coordinated and monitored at all levels.
The OCC concept was established to sustain operations and crime combating initiatives with the aim of effecting reduction over the entire crime spectrum and the restoration of trust in the SAPS through the following imperatives:
Enhanced command and control
Effective coordination and accountability
Enhanced operational and tactical planning
Focused intelligence-led policing
Implementation and maintenance of the SAPS’s ideology of crime combating and frontline service delivery
Enhanced incident response
Enhance Public Order Policing activation and coordination
At the end of September 2016, the success of Operation Lockdown, the effective establishment of the Mount Road Cluster OCC and the downward trend in certain crime categories in the target areas, led to the withdrawal of the national police intervention although National Management Intervention continued to be available in an advisory capacity.
The Cluster OCC concept is being rolled out to all provinces and has so far already been officially launched in the Blue Downs Cluster in the Western Cape and the Johannesburg Central Cluster in Gauteng.
We anticipate that the next two launches will be in eThekwini in KwaZulu-Natal and Rustenburg in the North West. Before the end of this year, it is anticipated that the roll-out to all provinces will be complete, Deputy Minister Mkongi said.
Today marked the official hand over of the Mount Road Cluster OCC by the Deputy Minister of Police to the Provincial Commissioner of the Eastern Cape, symbolic of the Department of Police’s appreciation that the Cluster and the province has embraced and sustained the concept.
The Research Division of the South African Police Service has validated the OCC concept and Mount Road Cluster has progressed from being the pilot Cluster to being a fully operational OCC.
Between Thursday, 20 July 2017 and this morning, intelligence-led crime combatting operations were conducted in the Cluster and the Deputy Minister expressed his appreciation for the significant successes achieved.
In total, 307 arrests were effected, eight firearms were recovered and various drugs were seized.
Source: South African Government News Agency