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Criminality in Viana: a reality that is characterized as a real social scourge

Cesário Sousa

Criminal psychologist, writer and vice president of the Research and Biographies Center of Angola (CIBA)

With just over 1,800,000 inhabitants and an area of 1,433 km², the municipality of Viana - also known as Satellite Municipality - is located in the Province of Luanda, thus hosting the Industrial Reserve, which is inserted in the Luanda-Bengo Special Economic Zone "ZEE-LB".

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That part of the territory of Luanda continues to be one of the Municipalities with high crime rates, thus establishing a “permanent alert state”, not only for the inhabitants of that Municipality, but also for those who have their enterprises and / or jobs in that
region of the country's capital. This situation has forced the National Police to redefine its action strategies, in order to provide greater security to that Municipality.

Through the media, there are reports of violations every day in various districts of Viana. Some of these actions have to do with theft, theft, sexual abuse and rape, crimes against life, etc. Unfortunately, the Satellite Municipality has become a constituency in which
Criminal episodes have become commonplace.

It is an old problem, but which, in recent years, has reached expressive levels, that is, a real social scourge. If, on the one hand, crime has the consequence of a large population flow, as a result of the compulsory trips from the interior of the country to Luanda - this, in the period of
war and fraticid post-war - on the other hand, the poor distribution of income, precarious social conditions, the disruption of families, the precariousness of the public lighting system and the lack of mass policing, are directly related to the increase in crime rates.

With the adoption of restrictive measures - at the end of last March - in order to slow down the expansion of the contagion curve of the new corona virus, the number of people in circulation was reduced and, with that, occasions favorable to crime also reduced by much of the country. Despite the social isolation, the Public Security Situation Daily Report - provided by the Viana Municipal Police Command - demonstrates that the Municipality exhibited a disturbing crime rate.

As we will see in the tables that follow, the data reflects occurrences recorded between June 1 and 13 of this year. The following table shows the types of crimes and the number of registered cases:

Table 1 - Crimes registered from 1 to 13 June 2020

Type of Crime Number of Registered Cases
Voluntary homicides 14

Bodily offenses

45
Qualified theft 71
Rape 7
Thefts 36
Assault 5

Document forgery

9
Real estate occupation 12
Economic crimes 18
TOTAL 247

Source: Prepared by the author, based on the Daily Report on the Public Security Situation of the Viana Municipal Police Command.

According to the information in Table 1, in the period analyzed, out of a total of 217 crimes recorded, more than 32% were of qualified theft. Another crime that also had a high number is that of corporal offenses, with 20.7% of the total crimes. The crimes of sexual rape and rape had few records, with 3.2% and 2.3%, respectively.

The report also enabled us to identify the neighborhoods with the highest occurrences, with emphasis on Zango (I, II, III, IV, VE 5000), Km 12-A and B, Mirú, Heróis do Kuito, Luanda Sul, Boa Esperança, Km 30, Capalanga, Regedoria, Km 14-A, Vila Nova, Moagem, Km 9-A and B, Jacinto Tchipa, Boa Fé, Canjinji and Tchimuco.

The number of detainees obtained from the Daily Report on the Public Security Situation from 1 to 13 June 2020 are shown in the following table:

Table 2 - Number of detainees from 1 to 13 June 2020

Day of the month Male Female Total detainees
1 214 2 216
2 212 5 217
3 176 4 180
4 174 4 178
5 172 0 172
6 198 0 198
7 229 1 230
8 213 5 218
9 295 3 198
10 201 0 201
11 192 3 195
12 168 4 172
13 205 0 205
TOTAL 2549 31 2580

Source: Prepared by the author, based on the Daily Report on the Public Security Situation of the Viana Municipal Police Command.

From the figures in Table 2, we can infer that, of the total inmates, women represent only 1.2%, demonstrating that men are the biggest triggers of illicit actions, with 98.8% of the total inmates.

In the period analyzed, between the days with the highest and lowest record of male detention, there was a variation of 57 detentions, that is, 2.24% of the total. This information is confirmed when we compare the information on the 5th and 7th, and also on the 7th and 12th. As for the female gender, the variation was no more than 5 arrests (1.55% of the total female arrests).

In view of this scenario, efforts are expected to be redoubled in order to see an improvement in the level of performance of the National Police, thus impacting the degree of response of the security forces and, consequently, in the circulation and remained of the popular in these critical regions.

In this sense, it is worth highlighting the work that has been carried out by the Viana Police, under the guidance of the Municipal Commander of Viana, S. Subcommittee Gabriel Jorge Dos Santos “Capusso”, who, collaborating with businessmen and the civil society of that constituency, carry out an awareness campaign aimed at young people with actions that go against the law. This work is part of the Integrated Proximity Policing Program and aims at including these young people in the job market, through technical and professional training.

We recognize that the good performance of the National Police is also strongly dependent on working conditions. It is important that the National Police General Command reinforces the corporation's material and technical capacity, providing sophisticated means of work, permanent education and training in public security, with the real intention of seeing a more effective Police, not only in Viana, but also, throughout the entire national territory.

Regarding the training and permanent qualification of security agents, it is important to emphasize that it does not make sense to address the fight against crime if it is not linked to the regular improvement of the human resources that participate and act in favor of compliance with the Law and Vale also emphasizes that , fighting crime is not exclusive to the police, which, despite having increased duties, depends a lot on public security policies.

The adoption of social policies as a way of preventing crime

The discussion on the impact of social policies in preventing and combating crime has long ceased to merit attention. It is important that our State is based on social policies that result in Social Welfare. By this we mean that the better distribution of income, the creation of social protection policies, investments in education, housing, jobs, promotion of sporting activities, etc., have a positive impact on preventing and fighting crime.

In addition to the aspects mentioned above, in the specific case of Viana, the problem of public lighting, which besides being a factor that facilitates criminal practices, is also an impediment in the performance of the Police's work. Therefore, the Municipal Administration, together with the company responsible for the public lighting of the Municipality, needs to work hard to improve this issue, which is essential to prevent and combat crime.

Opinion of
Cesário Sousa