Police training inadequate

2016-12-08 06:01

THE government decries the increasing number of police murders but the ministers must not only focus on these killings. Barely a mention is made in the media of yet another farm murder, which since 1994 to 2012 total approximately 4 000.

The voluntary farm protection service, the Kommandos, was disbanded by the government. The number of whites killed during this period amounts to approximately 70 000. The Afrikaans radio station, Radio Sonder Grense, is the only media which reports the farm murders.

Industrious farmers, labouring on their land, are not armed. Also how many defenceless, frail, elderly, senior citizens have been targeted, whilst either strolling on the beach, or in their homes? Police members undergo training and are armed. They patrol in pairs and if they anticipate danger, can call for immediate back-up. Hence, one can conclude that the training is inferior, or that an aspiring police member is neither mentally nor physically capable/suitable to fill the position.

Extensive training was provided to reservists in Johannesburg. The trainee participated in shooting practices, firing at moving targets and from a speeding vehicle.

A trainee was obliged to abseil down walls of buildings, to jump from roofs, scale walls, run up walls and complete numerous SWAT courses.

In addition, many of us enrolled at Unisa for the BA Police Science Degree. During current times, numerous police members lack skills to complete the documentation. Once, after responding to a housebreak, I indicated in the docket that “a list of stolen items will be furnished later”. On reviewing the docket a few days later, I observed that the detective had inscribed, “The furniture she was also stolen”.

Our notorious Interpol head, Mr Selebi (who never served any time in the police) exhorted us to remain slim, as we would not “fit into the uniform”. Now, the converse is true.

A few years ago, my elderly friend, in her eighties, was the victim of an armed robbery. Although she lives within metres of the police station, my friend and I, driving from Uvongo, responded more than 15 minutes before the police.

As the keys had been stolen, I was obliged to clamber over the front, neighbouring wall, scale the dividing precast wall between the properties and eventually climb into a tree, to jump into the victim’s property.

When the police arrived, they were unable to enter the property. My friend lifted the electronic gate off the rail. The police members were three times younger than me but three times heavier.

Later the station commander indicated the place of entry of the housebreakers, pointing to tracks, which were my size four shoe tracks in the sand, next to the tree.

Dr L.J. Peltz


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