those of you that were thinking about immigrating to the UK – you may be better
off staying where you are.
While statistically speaking, the UK is still behind South Africa in terms of crime rates, they are catching up fast. Crime has increased dramatically over the past few years, with an epidemic in knife crime, acid attacks and moped enabled attacks sweeping across the country.
Although violent crime is still higher in South Africa and mostly perpetrated using firearms, violent knife crime is becoming an everyday occurrence across the UK, with London suffering the most. Shockingly, figures reveal that crime is now rising faster in the UK than in South Africa, with knife crime the biggest reason for this surge.
According to police records in the UK, crime has gone up by 7% in the past year and violent crime went up by 19%, violence that actually resulted in serious injury or death went up 7%. During the same period, The Ministry of Police released crime statistics showing that the murder rate in South Africa has increased by 6.9% from the previous year.
Statistics paint a grim picture for the UK, showing that knife crime is consistently rising, with 39,818 knife crime offences recorded in the 12 months ending September 2018. This is an increase of two-thirds from 2014, which puts the number at an all-time high.
The Home Office has blamed the increase on Government-imposed austerity measures and has said the falling numbers of police has meant they are now “seriously struggling to cope”.
Chairwoman of the National Police Chiefs Council has called the knife crime epidemic a “national emergency” and says the only way to tackle it is by putting more police back on the streets. Police force numbers have dwindled substantially in recent years, with a reduction of 21,000 officers since 2010.
John Moore, Director of Westminster Security in London says:
“The threat of terrorism in the UK, more predominantly in London, is at an all-time high. Whilst police resources have been focused on that, lower level street and gang crime has gone unchecked and thrived. The already overstretched police simply cannot cope, which is why more people are opting to hire bodyguard services in London and across the UK to help keep them safe.”
Aside from knife crime, the UK has seen an increase in terrorist attacks over recent years, while South Africa remains relatively unaffected by this type of threat. Although the number of people killed remains relatively low, MI5 Director General Andrew Parker, recently made a rare public statement to emphasise the extreme threat Britain faces from Islamist terrorism.
There were a staggering four deadly terror attacks in 2017 and a further attack in 2018, with more predicted in the comings years after the defeat and dispersal of ISIS in Syria. What’s more, these worrying statistics do not take into consideration the number of terrorist plots that have been intercepted by British Intelligence agencies during this time.
While this may be true, South Africa is still considered one of the most dangerous countries in the world, with the UNODC declaring it has the fifth highest murder rate globally. The UK is still safer statistically speaking, especially considering it has a larger population and the volume of serious crimes is higher in South Africa.
However, data suggests crime in the UK is growing at an alarming rate and the country should no longer be considered the safe haven it once was.