On Wednesday 15 February, a room in the men’s residence Taaibos was broken into and a car stolen from the parking lot.

According to Brandon van Zyl, his roommate notified him that their room door and cupboards had been broken open and his car was missing from the parking bay. His keys and car were stolen, along with other valuables. The room was unoccupied from 10:00-12:00 that morning.

When campus security arrived, all security systems were still fully functional and there was also no sign of a possible entry point, other than the swipe-in door.

A formal case has been opened and a SAPS investigator appointed. However, the vehicle has not yet been recovered and the identities of the trespassers are still unknown.

Taaibos Chairperson, Curtis Loehmer, said that this was the first break-in and car theft incident during his time in Taaibos.

“It seemed as though the guys who did it knew what they were doing, as it was a well-planned break-in,” Loehmer added.

Colin Fouché, Director of Security Services, emphasized that safety within the residential area is a collective effort and that students must also ensure that the access electronic security systems already in place are not overcome by swiping strangers in, or lending their keys to friends.

“Not all perpetrators are unregistered [and] people utilise information,” says Fouché .

Fouché also advises students with cars to invest in a car tracking system and a gear-lock. Students in residences can also have a security safe installed in their rooms at a small cost.

The Department of Security Services meets with the heads of residences every two weeks to evaluate safety and encourages students to report suspicious activity to their house parents or HKs in order to prevent similar incidents from occurring.

Photo: Bonita Lubbe

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