Bay to get Metro police in April

2016-03-23 06:00
Pinkie Mathabathe.

Pinkie Mathabathe.

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AFTER seven years and two highly paid police chiefs without staff, Nelson Mandela Bay is set to have its own metro police force from next month.

“The money and plans are in place – all that is needed is an executive director,” executive mayor Danny Jordaan announced at a recent council meeting.

According to him the establishment of the metro police force was delayed because the executive director of Safety and Security, Pinkie Mathabathe, resigned earlier this year.

The name of a suitable candidate has been submitted for approval, according to Jordaan.

“We are committed to the establishment of the metro police in April.”

Plans for the establishment of a metro police force were proposed for the first time in 2009 and Adv. Trish Armstrong was appointed as project team leader.

The metro’s traffic department was disbanded in November 2009 to be incorporated into the force that had yet to be established.

On Christmas Day and Day of Goodwill in 2009 not a single traffic officer reported for duty, Die Burger reported at the time.

The plans were provisionally put on hold in 2010 temporarily and after a long battle, which ended in court, Armstrong’s service contract ended.

The plan was again brought to the fore in 2013 when Ben Fihla was appointed as executive mayor. There wasn’t, however, enough money. Despite this, the post of metro police chief was advertised and Mathabathe, former deputy chief of the Tshwane metro police in Pretoria was appointed in February 2014.

Two years later she became acting director of safety and security.

Jordaan said earlier this year that a budget of around R500 million is available for the metro police while 40 trained officers are ready to start working.

“We want to make the Bay one of the safest metros in the country. There is no place for crime,” said Jordaan. – REPORTER

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