On 15 March this year a delegation of some 30 property owners and Muizenberg Improvement District (MID) members led by Toby Megaw met with the MID Board to present their concerns about public safety issues in the community. They expressed their dissatisfaction with the incumbent Public Safety service provider and asked the Board to put the Public Safety contract out to tender. They also asked to be involved in the process of setting criteria for a new MID Public Safety contract and in the selection of a service provider.
The MID Board welcomed the positive interest from members and agreed to a re-tendering process. To achieve the required level of consultation a sub-committee was set up comprising the following members:
Hugo Coetzee, MID Public Safety Director and Public Safety Tender Sub-committee Chair | Peter Wright, MID Director | Lesley Schroeder, MID Deputy Chair | Chevone Petersen, MID Manager | Toby Megaw representing the Muizenberg Lakeside Ratepayers Association (MLRA) | Henrik Daugbjerg representing the MCSI Neighbourhood Watch | Peter Corbett representing residential properties in Muizenberg Village | Mike Romyn representing properties outside of the Muizenberg residential/village area | Truida Prekel of the NGO Safer Together, representing Community Organisations
The guiding principle for the integrity of the tender process rested on professionalism and objectivity with decisions based on what is in the best interest of the geographical area that is the Muizenberg Improvement District; and with due understanding of the governance framework of the MID as a not-for-profit company and how it implements its mandate to improve the district. This is driven by collaboration and the provision of top-up services in four distinct but integrally related areas of cleaning, environmental upliftment, social development and public safety. Each of these mandated areas directly impacts on overall public safety and visitors and residents having a positive experience in Muizenberg.
At the outset, the MID Board explained it would adhere strictly to what is legally permissible for a Special Rating Area (SRA) to put in place; and that the MID directors carry legal liability for decisions and will therefore, after due robust and transparent consultation with the sub-committee, have the final say on any decisions made. The Board also reserved the right not to make an appointment.
Interested and qualified prospective service providers were invited to respond to a Request for Expression of Interest (EOI) by 10 June 2016. EOIs were received from GRIT Security Services, Mountain Security Services and Securitas who were invited to a briefing session with the sub-committee on 8 July 2016. All three companies submitted proposals by deadline on 29 July 2016 and met the requirements for short-listing. They were subsequently interviewed by the Public Safety Tender Committee on 5 August 2016.
The same set of questions were put to each tendering company and covered:
- Performance, management and qualifications of patrollers in public space
- The type and mix of patrolling proposed (bicycles, foot, vehicle)
- Available back-up for the patrols
- Assessment of their understanding of the difference between public safety in an SRA and private security/response services for homes
- Their knowledge of Muizenberg and their networks within the area
- Their approach to monitoring and acting with regard to by-law issues, for example when dealing with homeless people and street children
- The style of reporting to the MID Board and how they plan to communicate with MID members and the community
- Their view on camera monitoring and the role they could potentially play in this area
- How they plan to strengthen collaboration with other groups and individuals involved in Public Safety and Policing in the MID area
- How they plan to gather safety and crime intelligence
- While price was not questioned during the interviews with the tenderers, its weight was 20 points out of the total
Scoring was out of a total of 100 points and each sub-committee member handed in two sets of scoring: – a pre-interview score and a post-interview score.
Apart from achieving the highest combined score, the GRIT offering provides the best value for money with a combination of patrolling and surveillance methods, including a branded patrol vehicle dedicated to the public area of the MID. Most importantly the service fee proposed by GRIT amounts to a cost saving of approximately R240, 000.00 per year which can be allocated towards the wider MID Public Safety Mandate and greater collaboration with those who can help drive the changes needed.
On 16 August 2016 the MID Board reviewed recommendations from the sub-committee and took a decision to appoint GRIT Security as the MID Public Safety Service Provider, commencing operations on 1 October 2016.
What is encouraging, is that for the first time, two local companies: Mountain Security Services and GRIT Security stated their willingness to collaborate with each other in the MID public safety space and the MID Board will work with both companies to explore ways of achieving this.
The MID Board thanks the sub-committee members for the many hours and the careful thought they put into the Public Safety Tender process.
The MID Board welcomes input and proactive feedback from MID members. When engaging with us please be aware that the MID top-up patrolling services are only one component of the Public Safety Strategy. And while they are a visible deterrent to crime, there is a great deal more than patrolling happening behind the scenes. Collaboration and intelligence sharing are at the heart of public safety. This is why the monthly MID Ops Forum brings together all the players involved in policing, law enforcement, security and safety.
PRASA security officers and the MCSI Neighbourhood Watch are also involved in the MID Ops Forum. This level of partnering resulted in a series of clean-ups along the Railway reserve which were highly successful in improving the safety of the area between False Bay and Muizenberg Stations. The next step is to address access control and maintenance within the railway reserve and this is in process.
Other important projects already underway illustrate how virtually everything the MID does fits into the greater public safety mandate. These include:
- Minimising criminal activity and the problem of car guards harassing beach users by introducing controlled parking on the beachfront.
- The plan to fence Muizenberg Park is also in progress
- Close cooperation with the City’s Problem Building Unit where the MID acts swiftly to deal with property invasion, vandalism and tenant overcrowding.
MID members are encouraged to stay close to the work of the MID and may attend the public sessions held directly before each monthly board meeting. See dates here: http://www.mid.org.za/2016-board-meeting-dates/
Issued by Hugo Coetzee, Public Safety Director, Muizenberg Improvement District
The Muizenberg Improvement District (MID) is a geographic area where property owners have contracted to pay a levy to facilitate a joint effort by the City of Cape Town and the local community to ensure more effective management of public areas and promote business confidence. The Muizenberg Improvement District is a legal not-for-profit company under the City’s Special Rating Areas by-law and also governed by the South African Companies Act 2008.
It is within this governance framework that the MID implements its mandate. This is driven by collaboration and the provision of top-up services in four distinct but integrally related areas of cleaning, environmental upliftment, social development and public safety.
The MID collaborates with city and provincial departments, state owned entities, NGOs and a wide range of residents and business people to improve Muizenberg. Improving means ‘adding to’ not taking away the responsibility for services. Therefore the MID provides strategic direction and puts focused pressure on City and Government agencies whose job it is to police and deliver services.
Enquiries: Chevone Petersen firstname.lastname@example.org Cell: 082 463 1525