Mowbray police are doing a good job under tough conditions, says community police forum (CPF) boss Jonathan Hobday.
He was speaking on Monday at the CPF’s annual general meeting at the Maitland police station, where he retained his position as chairman with the election of a new committee.
“Our police service is fast being compromised by staff shortages, resulting in unacceptable levels of dysfunctionality and sub-standard service delivery,” he said.
The station had no working crime prevention unit and its operations had suffered a blow with the death last year of station commander Lieutenant Colonel Jairaj Rameshwarnath.
Nevertheless, Mowbray police had done a sterling job under trying circumstances, Mr Hobday said.
“They were well supported by the Little Mowbray Rosebank Improvement District (LMRID) and Groote Schuur Community Improvement District (GSCID), providing a professional and satisfactory complementary security service.”
Neighbourhood watches also worked well with the police and WhatsApp groups were effective communication channels, he said.
Acting station commander Captain Deon Bock said resources were strained.
“Mowbray police has nine visible policing (vispol) vehicles, of which a few are in for repairs and one is parked at the station because it was in an incident last weekend, which means there are four operational vispol vehicles,” he said.
Candidates were being shortlisted for the station commander job and it should be filled by the beginning of May, and the station also had four new constables, he said.
GSCID general manager, Barbara Breedt said: “Getting everybody involved and not just relying on Mowbray police to do everything, the community working together is a winner.”
Mr Hobday encouraged the public to volunteer at the police station, which needs more victim-support counsellors, reservists and clerks.
The CPF’s newly elected committee members will continue in their roles until 2025.