Passersby of the City’s Ndabeni Metro Police training facility this week would have been forgiven for thinking it was the location of an intense strongman competition as thousands of Capetonians were put through their paces.The City of Cape Town’s Metro Police Training College started assessments for 12 335 candidates last week, in the search of 120 candidates who will undertake the learnership programme for traffic service and Metro police vacancies. Since Monday 29 July, candidates have reported to the Ndabeni facility for a physical assessment – the first step in determining whether they will qualify for the job. Candidates were subjected to a 2.4km run within 13 minutes for men and 15 minutes and 30 seconds for women, a reach test, push-ups, sit-ups and shuttle runs.“This physical assessment is not for the faint-hearted. We require that all of our operational staff have a level of physical capability to do the job, and anyone who fails to meet the requirements of the physical assessment is not allowed to proceed to the next phase,” said Mayco member for safety and security, JP Smith. He added: “It is also no walk in the park for the staff, who are assessing an average of 1 050 individuals a day, over a 12-day period.‘The number of applications is astounding and speaks to the need for gainful employment. These jobs are no walk in the park, but I trust that there are candidates in the crowd of thousands who will one day wear the uniform with pride and serve and protect their communities with distinction.”Once the physical assessments are completed, the candidates left standing will partake in a written assessment, followed by interviews. The successful candidates will move on to the 12-month traffic learnership, followed by a six-month municipal policing qualification at the Metro Police Training College in Observatory. “In the past six months, we have spoken often about increasing our enforcement footprint, particularly with the additional budget that has been made available to the Safety and Security Directorate. This recruitment process is directly linked to those announcements made. We will soon be celebrating the graduation of another batch of Metro Police and traffic officers, which will further increase our numbers on the ground,” added Smith.