Batswana do not feel safe to walk the streets at night and believe Botswana is one of the five most dangerous places in the continent and among the 10 ‘least secure’ countries in the world alongside war-torn nations and failed states, the 2018 Global Law and Order Report has revealed.
Botswana ranked among the 10 least secure of 142 countries on Gallup’s annual gauge of how secure people feel. The report confirms conventional realities – Botswana’s crime has being soaring for more than a decade with cases of illicit drugs, love killings, road accidents, wildlife poaching and human trafficking giving the police sleepless nights.
The report further states that Botswana is among the 10 countries that may be farther away from reaching the United Nations’ goal for peaceful, secure societies than any other country in the world, based on their scores on Gallup’s Law and Order Index in 2017.
Scoring 61 points out of a score of 100 on the Law and Order index, Botswana’s crime rates have increased over the years, with the year 2017 being the tipping point.
The report suggests that these crimes have reduced the trust of the citizens in the police, with scores of Batswana convinced that it is futile to report some crimes.
Although the Botswana police were ranked the best in the continent in 2017 (according to the World Internal Security and Police Index), the report suggests that Batswana have lost confidence in the law enforcement agencies ability to contain the soaring crime.
The Law and Order Index rank countries according to their level of security based on interviews from citizens of 182 countries worldwide.
After a qualitative analysis by Gallup, it decided the five least secure countries on the African continent. Gallup’s qualitative analysis show that the five least secure countries on the African continent are Liberia (scoring 56 points) , Botswana (61 points) , South Africa, Gabon (55 points) and South Sudan(54 points).
The report shows that while Botswana and South Africa are Sub-Saharan region’s more economically developed countries, income inequality remains an issue in both which contribute to soaring crimes. Only 34 percent of Batswana said they feel safe walking alone in their area at night while 31% of South Africans are least likely to say they feel safe walking alone at night.
To compile the 2018 report, Gallup asked 148,000 adults in 142 countries four yes or no questions: Do you have confidence in your local police, do you feel safe walking alone at night, have you had money or your belongings stolen in the last year, have you been mugged or assaulted in the last year. The results were used to score each country out of 100.
Commenting on the report, Global Managing Partner at Gallup Jon Clifton said “These are critical measures because they are the on-the-ground truth of what is happening in a country. Leaders too often rely on crimes that have been reported to authorities. The problem, of course, is that not all crimes are reported — especially if people don’t trust their police.”
He added that “At Gallup, we believe that the best leaders in the world don’t just want safety for their citizens — they want people to feel safe. And if making people feel safe is the objective, then leaders need a metric for that — whether people feel safe.”
According to the report, the ten countries out of 182 Perceived as least safe countries are Venezuela (44), Afghanistan (45), South Sudan (54), Gabon (55), Liberia (56), South Africa (58), Mexico (58), Dominican Rep. (60), Botswana (61), Sierra Leone (61).
The top 10 states perceived as safest countries are Singapore (97), Norway (93), Iceland (93), Finland (93), Uzbekistan (91), Hong Kong (91), Switzerland (90), Canada (90), Indonesia (89) and Denmark (88).
According to Gallup this survey is a way of monitoring sustainable development. The research company believes that there is a ┬½strong relationships between people’s answers to these questions and external measures related to economic and social development, reinforcing how high crime rates can suppress social cohesion and negatively affect economic performance.