GOOD NEWS AND BAD: Public perceptions of crime, corruption and government

  • Robert Mattes University of Cape Town
Keywords: crime, safety, South Africa, police, corruption, public perception


Idasa and Afrobarometer public opinion surveys conducted since 1994 reveal that levels of reported experiences with crime are unchanged over the past four years, but that public perceptions of overall safety and the performance of the police are actually improving. Of greatest concern is that the January-February 2006 survey found that almost half of all South Africans think that “all” or “most” police officials are involved in corruption. These are the highest rates recorded across ten different types of public servants. In contrast to the improving trends in public perceptions of crime, citizen views of corruption in the police (and other government institutions) are becoming worse.

Author Biography

Robert Mattes, University of Cape Town

Centre for Social Science Research

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