Good anti-crime strategies being pursued by the police in the northern region are paying off as crime has dropped by 15 percent in the first six months of 2017, compared to the same period last year.
According to the Northern Region Police Public Relations Officer, Peter Kalaya, said statistics show that a total of 2386 cases have been reported in the said period this year as compared to 2792 cases which were reported in 2016 representing a 15 percent drop.
Superintendent Kalaya said while rape and defilement cases have decreased by 92 percent and 35 percent respectively, murder cases have increased by 23.7 percent.
A total of 13 rape cases were reported in the first half of 2016 while only one has been reported this year. 153 cases of defilement were recorded in the region in the first six months of 2016 while 105 cases have been reported in the same period this year.
“The region has recorded a total of 47 muder cases this year as compared to 38 cases reported during the same period in 2016”, said Kalaya.
The statistics also reveal a 11 percent decrease in road accidents though fatal road accidents have jumped by almost 23 percent with 17 more people being killed this year than in the same period last year.
The spokesperson further said in total, 59 people lost their lives in road accidents in the region in the first six months of 2016 as compared to 79 people this year.
While 152 road accidents were recorded in the first six months of 2016 in the region, only 135 accidents have been reported this year representing a 11.2 percent decrease.
The decrease in in the crime rate and road accidents in the region is attributed to officers adherence to an anti-crime strategy which was set at the onset of the year by the regional top management spearheaded by the outgoing Commissioner of Police, Madame Martha Suwedi PPM.
In the strategy, the region set itself an ambitious target to reduce crime and road accidents by at least 40 percent.
In the strategy, each station has been mandated to revamp and activate its Community Policing Forums (CPFs) and the regional community policing and public relations departments have been involved in awareness meeting with the public through roadshows, school outreach programs and engaging both print and electronic members of the media.
Out of the seven police stations in the region, Mzuzu Police has out performed the rest by reducing its crime by 21 percent.