Nhleko: Farlam report an 'excellent' opportunity to transform police

2015-09-02 11:22
Nathi Nhleko. (Amanda Khoza, News24)

Nathi Nhleko. (Amanda Khoza, News24)

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Parliament – The Farlam Commission’s report offered an "excellent" opportunity for transformation within the SA Police Service, Police Minister Nathi Nhleko said on Wednesday.

“Post 1994, there is no opportunity such as this one for us to fundamentally deal with critical issues,” he told Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Police.

He said they were taking a very significant step in driving a change management programme within the police force.

Nhleko went through the recommendations of the commission, released in a report in June.

The commission, headed by retired judge Ian Farlam, investigated the deaths of 44 people killed during strike-related unrest at Lonmin's platinum mine in Marikana, Rustenburg, in August 2012.

Nhleko said one of the recommendations they would implement was appointing an independent panel of experts to advise on public order policing issues.

It would be a presidential project and the panel would have 12 months to complete its work and three months to write up its report.

‘Unique culture’

The minister said there were an average of 10 000 public protests per year, and this posed a challenge in the manner policing was conducted.

“South Africa has got a very unique culture. I am not aware of any other country in the world where, when people are protesting, there are spears and knobkieries.”

Nhleko said experts would also help it tap into best practices around the world regarding demilitarisation and professionalisation of the police.

The panel would be supported by a transformation task team, led by the deputy police minister, for change from the “outside in”.

An overall transformation plan would be submitted to Cabinet and then implemented by the minister directly or through the national police commissioner.

Nhleko said the focus for the next two years would be on implementing the recommendations as well as dealing with micro-criminality (hijackings and robberies) and syndicates.

Read more on:    police  |  nathi nhleko  |  cape town  |  marikana inquiry

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