Top job for seasoned crime-fighter

2016-05-18 06:00
uMgungundlovu cluster commander Brigadier Francis Bantham (right) congratulates Brigadier ‘Boxer’ Pillay on new role as commander of Mountain Rise police station.                    PHOTO: AMIL UMRAW

uMgungundlovu cluster commander Brigadier Francis Bantham (right) congratulates Brigadier ‘Boxer’ Pillay on new role as commander of Mountain Rise police station. PHOTO: AMIL UMRAW

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

AN emotional inauguration was held for seasoned crime-fighter Pregasen “Boxer” Pillay at a ceremony celebrating his new role as Mountain Rise police’s station commander.

Pillay, who was also promoted from colonel to brigadier, was shortlisted for the station commander position at Point police station in Durban as well as Mountain Rise, but on Tuesday it was announced he will take over the reins at uMgungundlovu District’s largest station.

Trying to hold back his emotions at the ceremony, Pillay - known affectionately as “Boxer” for his skills as an amateur boxer before he joined the police - began his speech by asking to be pinched because the promotion felt like a dream.

After a 35-year tenure in the force, of which 20 were spent as a colonel, Pillay said his promotion should stand as motivation for other seasoned officers­ not to give up.

“Never throw in the towel until the end,” Pillay advised.

With this week marking the 35th year of him joining the force, Pillay described the journey as “challenging”.

“I am still grappling with the feelings and coming to terms with this appointment. I know it comes with more accountability and responsibilities, which I fully embrace.”

Pillay joined the police in 1981 at Mountain Rise before being transferred to the Prestbury police station between 1982 and 1988. After getting his diploma in policing, he was transferred back to Mountain Rise where he climbed the ranks to his current position.

He served as the station’s commander between 1996 and 2007 before being demoted to head the visible policing unit.

However, he has since accumulated more than two years’ service in an acting capacity as station commander.

“I joined the police because I have always had the instinct to serve the community. You could call it a passion.”

Discussing his plans for the station, Pillay said he will focus on building stronger relationships between the police and the community as there is currently a challenge with meeting the community’s expectations.

He said he will also strive to enhance the principles of sector policing by, for example, initiating effective neighbourhood and community watch groups.

“We want the community to feel safe in their homes and in their areas.

“I also encourage my officers to always­ treat the community fairly and with dignity.

“I also hope to increase the response times from our station.”

Speaking at the ceremony yesterday, uMgungundlovu North cluster commander Brigadier Francis Bantham­ said Pillay has seen station commanders at Mountain Rise come and go, but “it is his time now”.

Confident in his capability, Bantham­ said Pillay commands the loyalty of his station’s officers and she believes he will make a huge difference in the station’s policing area.

Messages of well wishes poured in for Pillay yesterday.

Local African National Congress PR councillor Rachel Soobiah said Pillay­ has been an “integral part of policing”.

“He [Pillay] ushers in positive change and represents the ethos of integrity, professionalism and a desire to serve the community.”


Join the conversation! 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.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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 network.


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.