Officer helps hot tourist

2017-03-21 06:02
Sabelo Mthi, a Cape Town Central City Improvement District (CCID) public safety officer, has been commended for helping an elderly tourist.

Sabelo Mthi, a Cape Town Central City Improvement District (CCID) public safety officer, has been commended for helping an elderly tourist.

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A public safety officer is being commended for his compassionate act in the heat of the moment.

Sabelo Mthi, a Cape Town Central City Improvement District (CCID) public safety officer, was on duty in town on Thursday 23 February – a day when the mercury rose to 35°C.

During his shift, he spotted a 65-year-old American tourist walking on the Waterkant Street footbridge over Buitengracht.

Mthi approached the tourist, Terri Fleming, and advised her: “Mama, it’s too hot for you to walk to the Waterfront”.

“The lady said she wanted to go to the Waterfront. I asked her how she was going to get there, because it was too hot. I told her it wasn’t wise for her to walk so far in the heat and showed her where the cabs are,” Mthi says.

Fleming agreed to take a metered taxi, but when the taxi arrived, she realised it only accepted cash.

“I only had my American Express card, but the CCID officer insisted on paying for my ride,” she says.

Mthi adds: “She didn’t have money on her, so I asked if I could pay for her. It was the last money in my wallet, and she said she would come back and pay me back.”

The next day, Fleming returned to repay the R120 fare to Mthi, who was reluctant to accept it.

“One of my colleagues called me on the radio and told me: ‘Your angel is here.’ The lady had returned and paid me back, which I did not expect,” he says.

The CCID and its safety and security service provider, Iliso Protection Services, have since rewarded Mthi for going above and beyond the call of duty.

CCID safety and security manager Muneeb Hendricks says: “Not only are we seen as protectors of the area, but also as tourist ambassadors with lots of compassion where it counts. We try to help everyone we come across.

“Officers undergo a rigorous training course and must attend regular refresher training at the CCID full-time training centre. A large portion of the course deals with public relations, social assistance and being a tourism ambassador. Officer Mthi made us proud on this occasion.”

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