New station commander’s vision

2017-08-22 06:00
 Photo: Kalisha NaickerHillcrest SAPS Station Commander, Lieutenant-Colonel Zama Mabaso..

Photo: Kalisha NaickerHillcrest SAPS Station Commander, Lieutenant-Colonel Zama Mabaso..

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HILLCREST SAPS Station Commander­ Lieutenant-Colonel Zama Mabaso has vowed to tackle the escalating crime rate and the abuse of women and children in the Upper Highway area­.

For the mother of two, becoming a police officer was more than a job, it was a way to make a difference to issues that affect the community at grass-roots levels.

“I grew up in a rural area and the abuse of women and children was rife. Women were uneducated and dependent on their husbands, financially and emotionally. Ladies were never given the opportunity to be independent.

“Women were beaten daily and could not stand up to the men as they feared they would be left homeless and have no support to care for the children.

“I wanted to put an end to this and prove to women in the community that with determination and hard work we too can excel and women no longer have to live in the ‘shadow’ of their husband. With a police title I can also tackle domestic violence and abuse.”

With this vision in mind Mabaso matriculated in 1989 and after many years of applying to study further in a then male-dominated domain, she was finally accepted in 1995 at the South African Police Training College, Hammanskraal.

She completed her first year and was posted to Newcastle as a constable. In 1997 she was transferred to Ladysmith­.

From 1998 to 2000 Mabaso, then a sergeant, was stationed at Vryheid. From 2001 to 2004 she was promoted to warrant officer and was moved back to Ladysmith.

From 2005 to 2009 Mabaso was transferred to Hillcrest as captain and from 2010 to 2016 she was promoted to lieutenant-colonel and was stationed at Escourt.

This year Mabaso was transferred to Hillcrest SAPS as station commander. She holds a B Tech degree and says that education is the most important factor in life.

“Success only comes through hard work and determination.

“The police force used to be a very male-dominated career, but I was lucky that when I got into the force I immediately­ became operational and was not made to ‘push paper’ at a desk.”

Mabaso says she knows growing up in a rural community she knows the challenges that face communities at grass-roots level and wants to tackle this head-on.

“I want to drive out women and child abuse and show women they can be independent and earn their own income.

“Another issue I want to tackle in rural areas is to revive community policing forums. Without the support of communities we cannot tackle crime. With community participation we can effectively reduce crime and increase policing in all areas.”

She meets with role players - CPFs, security companies and sector police - every week to forge a plan of action.

Mabaso said she has an open-door policy and comments and criticism are always welcome.
“The community must understand that corruption and bribery is not tolerated at our station and they are welcome to report cases to me, and I will deal with it personally.”

She also encouraged the youth to think about choosing a career in the SAPS.
“There are so many opportunities at the SAPS nowadays ranging from forensics, air force, officers, and so on.

“Joining SAPS is not only about firearms and violence. If you have a dedication to serve and protect, join the SAPS.”

To arrange a meeting with Mabaso at the Hillcrest SAPS, phone 031 765 9100 or visit the station on the corner of Paddock and Old Main roads.


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