Browsing Faculty of Military Sciences by browse.metadata.advisor "Erasmus, Willem Driesse"
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- ItemThe role of social capital in a trust-building model between police and communities in the Ethekwini Metropolitan Municipality, South Africa(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2020-12) Mkhize, Mbekezeli Comfort; Erasmus, Willem Driesse; Theletsane, Kula Ishmael; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Military Sciences. School for Defence Organisation and Resource Management.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The trust between the police and communities in the eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality has conceivably diminished, thereby creating infertile grounds for the implementation of crime prevention strategies and collaborative efforts. In response, this study employed social capital as a trust-building model between the police and communities. While social capital solves social problems through established collaborations and partnerships, a knowledge gap exists in the South African context since not many studies have paid attention particularly to improving police-community relations. In bridging this knowledge gap, this study employed a mixed-methods approach to collect data. To operationalise the approach, structured questionnaires with closed-ended questions were administered to 150 participants. Two focus group interviews were conducted with police officials and Community Policing Forum (CPF) members respectively. Twelve personal in-depth interviews were conducted with traditional and political leaders. Existing literature was used to augment the interviews. Quantitative data were analysed through the use of the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS), while qualitative data were analysed by means of the content analysis method. The social network theory, social disorganisation theory, and contingency theory were employed to explain the relationships between the police and communities. The key findings reveal that social capital is strong at the level of friends, neighbours, and relatives; however, it is weak when one transcends this level and reaches the level of institutions (especially the police) and how they cooperate with the community. There are challenges that complicate the relationships between the stakeholders. The findings also reveal that the CPF acts as a buffer between the police and the community, but it is unable to function effectively because it is politically aligned, non-functional, and is undermined by uncooperative police officials. There are ongoing power struggles between police officials and CPF members. The findings show that in light of these power struggles, traditional leadership plays a central role in terms of building trust between the police, the CPF, and the community. This is because traditional leadership is seen as impartial as opposed to other role players in the community. As a consequence, this study developed a proposed social capital model that is context specific and anchored on traditional leadership as a pathway to building trust between the police, the CPF, and the community. This study recommends that there should be a mutually beneficial (or synergistic/collaborative) relationship between all the stakeholders that are involved in ensuring safety and security in communities. The study recommends that all stakeholders should undergo training in order to learn how to establish effective collaborative relationships or partnerships. In order to become a sustainable or effective bridge between the police and communities, CPF members should undergo training that involves confidence building, character building, and emotional intelligence. CPF members should be screened before they are elected. Because this study was based in a semi-rural area, a larger study (using a comparative analysis of urban and rural settings) is suggested for future research.