It may not come as a big surprise that South Africa received a low score in the latest Global Law and Order Index with regards to people’s safety and maintaining law and order. More than 148 000 people in 142 countries around the world were interviewed for the Index which takes into account people’s feelings towards crime incidences including theft, assault, and mugging in the past year.
A high score in the Index represents a high proportion of people who feel secure and safe in their own countries. The countries that scored the highest and lowest have remained relatively the same since 2016. The average index score for the world was 81 out of 100 in 2017. A total of 86 countries, including Venezuela and Afghanistan, scored lower than this average. The highest score went to Singapore with 97 and the lowest was Venezuela with 44. South Africa and Mexico had the sixth lowest scores with 58.
Here are some key findings worldwide:
- More than two in every three people worldwide say they have confidence in their local police (69%) and feel safe walking alone at night where they live (68%).
- One in eight (13%) say they had property stolen from them or another household member in the past year, and 5% say they were assaulted or mugged.
- Venezuela’s second consecutive appearance at the bottom of the list reflects a country still in crisis: Just 17% of residents said they felt safe walking alone at night where they live, and 24% expressed confidence in their police.
- Only three countries had residents who were considerably more likely than Venezuelans to say they had been the victims of theft in the past year: Afghanistan (46%), Uganda (49%) and South Sudan (50%).
- Nearly one in four residents in Venezuela (23%) said they had been assaulted — again one of the highest percentages throughout the world that year.
- Among the 10 countries in which residents are least likely to say they feel safe walking alone at night, five are in Latin America. Another four are in sub-Saharan Africa — including two of that region’s more economically developed countries, South Africa (31%) and Botswana (34%).