The municipality of Mourão, which belongs to Évora’s district, intends to proceed with the installation of a video surveillance system in the town centre as a means of countering the purported rise in criminal activity, the mayor of the municipality, João Fortes, has disclosed. The estimated cost of the video surveillance system, which will include eight to 12 cameras, is around €100 thousand.

The mayor has revealed in a statement to Lusa that criminal occurrences have been registered in the town, such as “intrusions into people's homes, attempted theft of cars and, sometimes, damage to property” and that “there is a vague association with youth groups”, he said adding that “We have always had some rare episodes of theft, particularly in hills, but, with no apparent explanation, the level of crime has increased and this corresponds to the volume of complaints”.

According to João Fortes, the municipality has already spent a fair amount of money in establishing a video surveillance system in a few areas of the municipality, which has made crime in those locations almost non-existent. Nonetheless, the problem persists in other areas which creates “a feeling of insecurity, a fear of going to the streets, of withdrawing money or of going to the pharmacy [...] in the year in which we celebrate 50 years of the 25 April, in which one of the fundamental principles is the freedom, without security there is no freedom, it has to be resolved”, the mayor has concluded.

The plan is to work together with the GNR in order to map the occurrences, and if agreed by the officers, the most prevalent crime-related areas will be covered by video surveillance. According to João Fortes, when the surveillance system starts operating, it will “give space for the GNR to focus more on patrolling in areas that are not being monitored”. However, although the chamber has put pressure on things to move forward as quickly as possible, the mayor believes that “the practical consequences of the GNR's action may be a little to be desired” and mentioned that it may be required to implement “some type of different methodology”.