Parliament concerned about growing civil claims against police

2017-04-20 20:58
The panelists at the dialogue. From left: Melanie Dugmore, Hon Francois Beukman, Commissioner Chris Nissen, Major General Maropeng Mamotheti. (Nation Nyoka, News24)

The panelists at the dialogue. From left: Melanie Dugmore, Hon Francois Beukman, Commissioner Chris Nissen, Major General Maropeng Mamotheti. (Nation Nyoka, News24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg – The escalation of the amount of civil claims against the SAPS over the past two financial years is of concern, Parliament’s police portfolio committee chairperson said on Thursday.

Police needed to review protocols and ensure this amount was reduced, Francois Beukman said at a discussion about human rights and policing, held at the SA Human Rights Commission in Johannesburg.

In the 2015/2016 financial year, civil claims escalated to R14.6bn, of which R290m was paid out. Another R7.3bn was either cancelled or reduced.

“Most of the cases related to illegal detention, shooting incidents, as well as illegal arrests,” he said.

Independent consultant and researcher, Melanie Dugmore, said the abuse of police power mostly involved arrests and people in police custody.

Beukman said it was important for those in authority to set high moral standards for officers to emulate.

He expressed concern about the proposed reduction in the number of police members.

“In terms of the budget that was tabled in Parliament, SAPS will cut their number of staff in the next three years by 3000. That means there will be more pressure on current members in terms of performing their duties effectively, and to ensure that they act in line with the Constitution,” he said.

SAHRC commissioner Chris Nissen said police had to respect human rights in executing their duties so they could gain the trust and confidence of communities.

Commission chairperson Bongani Majola condemned the killing of police officers. People needed to protect and support police as they maintained law and order.

“As the South African Human Rights Commission, we are greatly pained every time a policeman is killed,” he said.

Major General Maropeng Mamotheti hoped the discussion would help promote a culture of human rights in policing.

Deputy national police commissioner Lieutenant General Fannie Masemola and Police Minister Fikile Mbalula were not in attendance as they had to attend to renewed protests in Vuwani, Limpopo.

The two-day dialogue is hosted by the African Policing Civilian Oversight Forum, in partnership with the SAHRC.

Read more on:    police  |  parliament

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
Partner Content
Travel Dreams? Where would you rather be right now?

Partnered: Whether you're missing family overseas, dreaming of family adventures or romantic hideaways we all have that one place we'd rather be right now - but have you thought about the best way to get there?

/News
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.