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The Institute previously brought out three publications on official South African strategic and security perceptions as well as a related publication on strategic intelligence. Since this publication focuses on a more specialised theme, namely contemporary perspectives on combating crime in South Africa, it does not form part of the main series but is closely related to and supplements it.

The advent of democracy in South Africa in the 1990s was beset by various problems and issues, some of which required urgent attention at a policy and operational level. These included, amongst others, the manifestation and combating of crime. Although an ongoing process, since the prevailing levels of crime in society necessitate a continuous response, policy and strategic plans to combat crime have been developed, indicative of a more comprehensive and integrated approach to the problem. The official viewpoints and initiatives were framed, to a large extent, by the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996; the South African Police Act, 1995; the White Paper on Safety and Security, 1998; the National Crime Prevention Strategy, 1996; and the Strategic Plan for the South African Police Service, 2002 that also included a National Crime Combating Strategy. Opposition parties, as well as key role-players outside the Department of Safety and Security and the South African Police Service, have also developed views, advocated alternatives and participated in collaborative partnerships to combat crime. Their perspectives appear in various data sources ranging from reports, through executive overviews to published articles and bulletins.

This publication consists of five parts that respectively deal with official government policy and strategies to combat crime; official government viewpoints on these strategies to combat crime; the perspectives of and proposals for combating crime by the main opposition parties; the perspectives and involvement of other key role-players such as metropolitan authorities, the military, private security and the business sector in combating crime; and academic perspectives of the causes of crime and crime as a national security issue. Since the main emphasis is on the combating of crime in South Africa, these selected contemporary perspectives focus on macro-level policy, strategies, collaborative partnerships and proposals. Because it is beyond the scope of this publication, detailed information on related aspects such as criminal activities, crime categories, crime statistics, crime trends and policing are explicitly excluded.

The publication uses official published material such as white papers, annual reports, policy documents, the parliamentary budget vote and legislation, as well as public speeches by government ministers and public officials as its main source for the official viewpoints and strategies. These are presented in the form of selected excerpts and are offered without further comment or critique. The views of opposition parties and other role-players, as well as the academic analyses are based on solicited contributions and updated versions of previous ISSUP publications on crime and the combating of crime. Although the publication covers the period from 1994 to 2003, an exhaustive series of documents is not provided. The emphasis is rather on key contributions, with the result that the selected excerpts mainly represent the developments of the latter part of the 1990s up to the present.

The Institute trusts that this publication will contribute to a better understanding of current South African perspectives on the combating of crime and will stimulate further developments in the field of safety and security. In the final analysis, it is the practitioner who should not underestimate the value of information and viewpoints on combating crime.
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Author:Hough, M; Du Plessis, A
Publication:Institute for Strategic Studies
Article Type:Topic Overview
Date:Nov 1, 2003
Previous Article:Part four: the functioning of the intelligence community in the RSA.
Next Article:Part one: official policy and strategies.

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