Riah’s medals of dishonour

2014-10-25 00:00

NATIONAL police commissioner General Riah Phiyega does not deserve any of the four medals she wears, police members and their union said yesterday.

Although she had only joined the police two years ago in 2012, she wears a 10-year service medal; the amalgamation medal that dates back to 1994 when 11 police agencies amalgamated; a gold medal for excellent service normally given for exceeding bravery; and the police’s 2010 soccer world cup medal.

The SA Police Union (Sapu) said Phiyega’s misuse of the medals not only embarrassed the police, but also herself.

Sapu secretary general Oscar Skommere said to give Phiyega any medal is like rewarding an ahtlete who ended 60th in a 100 metre dash.

“The medals awarded to Ms Phiyega … belong to others, not her,” Skommere said in a statement.

“The only medal that belongs to the national police commissioner is the ‘mampara’ as she has brought shame to the SAPS since she took office in 2012,” Sommere said.

The DA yesterday offered National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega an award for patriotism on condition that she step down from her position.

“If she agrees to resign, we will provide her with a DA-sponsored patriotic duty award,” Democratic Alliance spokesperson Dianne Kohler Barnard said.

Police spokesperson Lieutenant General Solomon Makgale referred comment on the matter to the police ministry.

In a sarcastic statement, Kohler Barnard “congratulated” Phiyega on four medals she wore on National Police Remembrance Day.

The DA queried what the accolades were for in written parliamentary questions last month.

The Freedom Front Plus took a more serious tone in its reaction to Phiyega’s medals. “Phiyega should give the medals back if she attaches any value to the loyal and outstanding service of members of the police,” FF Plus spokeperson on police Pieter Groenewald said in a statement.

The policy ministry said Phiyega had no reason to remove her medals, as she had made great contributions to the police service.

V Oscar Skommere,Sapu secretary general

“The only

medal that belongs to the national police commissioner is the ‘mampara’ as she has brought shame to the SAPS since she took office in 2012.”

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