The number of people being killed in South Africa is rising daily as latest data revealed that more than 17,000 people were murdered in South Africa in the 2013-14 financial year.
National police commissioner Riah Phiyega said on Friday the figure for the year was 17,068 murders, translating into an average of more than 46 murders per day.
South Africa’s murder rate has been almost twice the African average in recent years, according to UN figures.
Attempted murder rose by 4.6 percent, while robbery with aggravated circumstances went up 12.7 percent, according to latest data available.
Despite those numbers, Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko insisted there were signs of a long-term improvement in South Africa’s crime rate.
“Even though we have had these increases in the 2013/14 year under review, the trend overall is on the decline,” Nhleko told a press conference.
According to the new statistics, rape cases in South Africa decreased by 6.3 percent in the observed period.
Nhleko attributed the decline to a “higher consciousness” in society through government campaigns and increased awareness of gender violence.
A number of factors contribute to historically high levels of crime in South Africa, including the normalisation of violence during the apartheid era, the breakdown of family structures and a huge economic gap between the rich and the poor.
South Africa doubled the number of police officers between 2002 and 2011.