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Anti-bribery Initiative: Cape Town Traffic Police Now Equipped with Body Cameras

Published September 21, 2023
8 months ago

In an effort to eradicate bribery and increase transparency, the City of Cape Town has equipped its traffic police officers with cutting-edge body cameras. This move forms part of an extensive R860m investment into safety technology that is designed to make Cape Town a safer city over the next three years.

In a ramped-up initiative fortifying law enforcement, 800 officers, including those in the traffic police department, will be fitted with body cameras, along with the installation of 290 in-vehicle, automated number plate recognition (ANPR) dashcams in the current fiscal year.

Geordin Hill-Lewis, the mayor of Cape Town, celebrated this technological advancement at a demonstration in Goodwood on Wednesday, applauding the enhanced situational awareness and evidence-gathering abilities provided by the body and in-vehicle cameras. The ANPR dashcams, in particular, instantly alert on-duty traffic police officers about vehicles linked to illegal activities, including outstanding warrants.

In an era of diminishing societal trust in law enforcement agencies, Hill-Lewis stated that this initiative will serve to foster increased trust and accountability, as all interactions between the public and law enforcement officers will be recorded and available for scrutiny.

Hill-Lewis also acknowledged the promising results of the ANPR dashcam trial efforts, particularly in identifying stolen vehicles and vehicles related to criminal activities. Paired with improved live streaming to control rooms, this initiative considerably enhances situational awareness during critical incidents.

With the new technology in place, the likelihood of successful convictions improved, as the body cameras serve a dual purpose. Not only do they significantly solidify the available evidence during prosecutions, but they also deter potential wrongdoers from assaulting officers.

While national plans to enforce bodycams have been placed on hold due to budget constraints, Hill-Lewis remains resolute that this move will positively influence public security and trust in law enforcement in Cape Town.

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