Group shocked at farm green lights ban

2011-04-28 23:01

Johannesburg - Farmers organisation TAU-SA is in "shock and disbelief", after Limpopo police vowed to stop farm watch organisations from using "green lights" on their patrol vehicles.

TAU-SA North provincial safety committee chairperson Doors le Roux, said he first thought the statement made by police last week was a "bad April fools joke". "They [the green lights] are imperative so that we can be visible and the criminals and residents can know we are patrolling," he said.

"The...committee has worked hard to open up communication channels with the South African Police Services (SAPS)."

The TAU SA North has a crime prevention programme known as Operation Iron Fist that is run with the full support of police, he said.

"The question now is whether the SAPS have the same purpose as the farm watch groups."

Police know nothing

Limpopo provincial police spokesperson, Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi, said police management will do all in its power to stop the use of "green lights".

"We have had complaints from members of some rural communities that some farm watch groups using "green lights" think they can do what they like," he said.

"In effect they think they are the police and some of the actions allegedly taken by them are bordering on vigilantism.

"They also claim they are working hand-in-hand with the police, when in fact the police know nothing about them," he charged.

Mulaudzi said "green lights" may not be used unless on private property, and only police were allowed to use blue lights when executing their tasks.

"Emergency services use red lights, and green lights can only be used by Disaster Management personnel.

"Tough punitive steps will be taken against those who contravene this directive," Mulaudzi warned.

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