'Aim for the head' didn't mean kill - Cele

2012-02-03 11:05

Johannesburg - The statement "aim for the head" did not mean police officers were expected to kill criminals, suspended national police commissioner Bheki Cele told the South Gauteng High Court, according to a report on Friday.

Cele, who was in court on Thursday, is suing The Sowetan for defamation, the newspaper said on Friday.

Cele claims the newspaper published unbalanced stories about him and a "manipulated" picture of him when he was the KwaZulu-Natal MEC for safety and security.

In reference to the comment "aim for the head", Cele said: "The statement... was made after a police officer died. He was chasing the criminal and shot him in the leg and when he [the officer] approached the suspect, he was then shot and killed.

"If the police officer had aimed for the head, the suspect and not the officer would have been buried instead."

He said the article also implied that he had ordered police to kill eight people.

"Political heads of police do not command police officers. The article implied that I ordered the police to shoot those people, but that was simply not true."

  • Silver - 2012-02-03 11:09

    BBBBwwwwwwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa HAHAHAHAHA!

      Eternity - 2012-02-03 11:35

      We believe you Chele. It's difficult enough for someone to hit a moving target but aiming for the head instead of center mass (the body) would make it so much easier for them to get away. Good thinking Joking a side figures in public view should watch what they say as it influences people

      StarStruck - 2012-02-03 11:38

      Aiming for the head would kill anyone. What the F!!!!!

      wbschorn - 2012-02-03 11:47

      Kop Skote!!! hahahaha...idiot...

      Jomah - 2012-02-03 11:50

      Bheki Cele probably believes that if a person is shot in the head, the injured can return to work as a brain dead politician!

      christoff.truter - 2012-02-03 11:55

      Well, remember this comes from the same people thats trying to tell everyone that kill the boer doesnt actually mean kill the boer, weird countrymen we're stuck with...

      Squeegee - 2012-02-03 12:19

      Calm down people, the chance of our police aiming for the head and actually hitting it are not very good.

      Jeffrey - 2012-02-03 12:42

      @Piet, I'm sure that Cele meant that the polices were to shoot for the head at just such an angle that the bullet would hit the skull at a tangent, knocking the criminal unconscious but not killing him.

      yolie.Landa - 2012-02-03 12:48

      EVen if "aim for the head" was meant for police to kill these criminals. I would be more than haPpy. LOL CELE>>>> ZUMA BRING CELE BACK...

      TheWatcher - 2012-02-03 14:43

      You know the sad thing about this is that the 'shoot to kill' and 'aim for the head' statements from him were the only ones I ever agreed with... Bullets are cheap. Food is expensive as is prison accommodation. Its a win/win situation.

      Ian - 2012-02-03 18:18

      He was right, they have nothing in their head, their brains are in their..... You want to kill them, shoot their 'traditional weapons' off!

      John - 2012-02-03 18:56

      BBBBwwwwwwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa HAHAHAHAHA!

  • rbphiri - 2012-02-03 11:11

    "The statement "aim for the head" did not mean police officers were expected to kill". If you aiming for someone's head, do you expect the bulle to merely give a person a minor headache? Police officials need to excercise the word restraint, but should show no remorse for cold blooded killers.

      Richard - 2012-02-03 11:36

      100% correct.

      Mary - 2012-02-03 11:40

      We would have a lot less crime if criminals did get a bullet in the head. As a victim of multiple aggravated robberies, I'll pull the trigger myself. Sodding police are too full of criminals themselves to do a decent job.

      Sharon - 2012-02-03 14:36

      To shoot and kill soneone the bullet must hit a vital organ. What he is implying is that there are no vital organs is the bad people's heads, therefore shooting them in the head will not do serious damage.

      ApotreDeChrist - 2012-02-03 21:28

      My friend, this statement makes sense to Cele because himself was once shot in the head that is why he behaves the way he does. You can clearly see that something is wrong with his head.

      Mary - 2012-02-03 21:51

      Or warm-blooded ones.

      Jayson - 2012-02-04 17:14

      In the banana republic, head shots don't kill people, because there is nothing in their heads

  • Comrade - 2012-02-03 11:11

    YOU DUMBAAS LIAR.....and you were the best person for the JOB...!!! God help us!

      rbphiri - 2012-02-03 11:20

      Someone should Aim for his head, than shoot him and justify his actions with the same statement: The statement "aim for the head" did not mean citizens were expected to kill police officials who are criminals,

      Kala - 2012-02-03 13:19

      Don't try shoot Cele in the head. The resulting ricochet could be dangerous to you or other bystanders.

  • Elle-Black - 2012-02-03 11:11

    Why is he changing his statement? I remember that he went as far as saying he would not retract the statemwent shoot to kill coz he meant it

      rbphiri - 2012-02-03 11:22

      Maybe he meant cops will Blow your Mind away...when you THINK of the hard work they do.

  • Derde - 2012-02-03 11:14

    I say " double tap to the head and one centre mass for good measure" Time to take back the land and kill off these rampant criminals. Kill them all.

  • MissGremlin - 2012-02-03 11:15

    As a responsible gun owner, I can safely say, that any time I would consider aiming for someones head, it is because I most assuredly, intend to kill said person.

  • Nick - 2012-02-03 11:17

    I'm not a doctor or anything, but uh, shooting at someone's head definitely increases the chances of them being killed by say, uh 99%...

      Mary - 2012-02-03 11:45

      You are assuming that there is a physical brain located between the ears of some people. :-)

      Nick - 2012-02-03 11:57

      That is irrelevant, but getting shot in the head, brain or not, is likely to kill you

      Mary - 2012-02-03 12:18

      I think you are an optimist. :-)

  • Gavin - 2012-02-03 11:18

    What he's trying to say, is that if you shot him [Cele] in the head, the wound wouldn't be fatal as there's nothing between his ears save for his stupid gland.

      Mary - 2012-02-03 11:51

      In Zuma's case, it might dislodge the shower head and crack the bathroom floor tiles.

      Mary - 2012-02-03 21:27

      Thanks Janine.

  • Erich - 2012-02-03 11:18

    Sometimes it is better to qualify what you mean, ever if you are risking the chance of being labelled an idiot.

      Mary - 2012-02-03 11:52

      Sometimes it is better to be thought an idiot than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt.

  • Myvision - 2012-02-03 11:19

    Did he say aim with a gun?

      Nick - 2012-02-03 12:02

      No, he said aim with a ham sandwich....................

      Mary - 2012-02-03 12:20

      Monty Python to the rescue.

      brandon.conroy3 - 2012-02-03 12:37

      Myancmylackofcomprehension...thanks for the laugh mate. @Nick, imagine a police force armed with ham sandwiches (white bread for the white criminals, brown bread for the brown criminals), brilliant comment.

      Jason - 2012-02-03 13:31

      No myanciamstuckonstupid, he said aim for the head with handcuffs and bad breathe!!

      TheWatcher - 2012-02-03 14:39

      Gun? no. I think its fairly obvious that police men should pull out their members and strike the criminals across the forehead.

      Myvision - 2012-02-03 15:38

      The General meant with knobkerries, you reactionary counter revolutionarists,

      TheWatcher - 2012-02-03 23:04

      @Myancmyfuture: really? prove it. Oh and by the way the 'revolution' ended in 1994 when this thing called an 'election' happened. Thus we cannot be counter revolutionaries.

      Lara - 2012-02-04 07:48

      Myancmyfuture, are you picking your nose in your profile photo???

      illaswart - 2012-02-05 14:28

      wow - there must be a secret specialised training regime for policemen where they learn to throw moving targets with knobkieries - and hit the HEAD. and, erm, i think a knobbie would, not only be a worse way to harm someone but can also kill with strike one. you truly are an idiot. please check your spelling, there is no such thing as "revolutionarists".

      skootzie - 2012-02-06 12:40

      I'm not sure which police force in Southern Africa uses knobkerries. The word is "revolutionists", I strongly suggest you learn to speak (and spell) English correctly if you intend to insult people. :/

  • Perfume5 - 2012-02-03 11:24

    The statement "aim for the head" did not mean police officers were expected to kill criminals....for once I am lost for words.

      rbphiri - 2012-02-03 11:30

      Further evidence to indicate how "intelligent" our police force is.

      Perfume5 - 2012-02-03 11:49

      I stand corrected, I am sure there was an article whereby Cele said if the criminal pulls out his gun and points it, he means business and went on to say the criminal is not inviting you to a tea party (paraphasing) - and that is when he said something about "shoot to kill"

  • Schmee - 2012-02-03 11:27

    What's he smoking?

      PointBlank - 2012-02-03 12:30

      Maybe he should start..

  • Thoka - 2012-02-03 11:27

    you are right aim for the head, this D!*k heads dont think when they pull the trigger. one less everyday shall make huge change. change kill the boer song for kill the thug. Hayiii hayi hayiii

  • Dmitri - 2012-02-03 11:27

    Is this guy (Cele) for real???

      Mary - 2012-02-03 11:53

      Yup. Real DUMB !!

  • SaTyRLoliCoN - 2012-02-03 11:31

    I think he's implying that the average South African criminal's brain is located in his pants, rather than his head. Thus, a headshot could be considered a flesh wound.

  • The-third - 2012-02-03 11:34

    Yes, of course. I wonder if these guys actually listen to themselves speak? I'd be embarrassed of my stupidity.

      Mary - 2012-02-03 11:55

      The stupid are not aware of their stupidity. If anyone wants a good laugh, Google for "George Carlin - Some people are stupid".

      skootzie - 2012-02-06 12:42

      The only thing more dangerous than a stupid person, is a stupid person who thinks they are more intelligent than everyone else.

  • Jamiu Peleowo - 2012-02-03 11:36

    Shocking, simply unbelievable!

  • Mary - 2012-02-03 11:38

    Bullshyte you lying criminal police official. Tell you what, we'll aim for your head but try not to kill you.

      E=MC2 - 2012-02-03 11:43

      read my comment below... might be relevant for Cele too :)

  • Nelia - 2012-02-03 11:40

    The head being a smaller target than the body, means that nobody is going to be hit by a bullet. If you want to hit someone you must aim for the centre of the body. Twit

      Heiku - 2012-02-03 11:51

      Yeah because nobody has ever been shot in the head before, right?

  • E=MC2 - 2012-02-03 11:42

    TOSSER! So "aim for the head & possibly hit them in the leg" is what he was implying? Well i suppose even if you hit some of these stupid criminals in the head it wouldnt mean they'd die because that would imply that they had brains to damage.

  • Shirley - 2012-02-03 11:43

    Well Mr Cele if you aimed for the head and your cops aim was better than their reading skills then what did you think would happen? Head shots are normally kill shots.[That is IF the officers can actually hit a target!] How long ago was this article published? You now only decide to sue? Cr@p!

      David - 2012-02-03 14:33

      He needs some dough after he lost a bag of cash on an airplane..shame..LOL

  • Wendy - 2012-02-03 11:44

    Maybe he was thinking about reducing dental bills of criminals, once they were in prison!! WTF?

  • Mvikeli - 2012-02-03 11:50

    The headline is not consistent with what Cele was trying to say. He says he "did not mean police officers were expected to kill criminals". He also said that "If the police officer had aimed for the head, the suspect and not the officer would have been buried instead" which I fully agree with. But the way the headline has been worded obviously makes him sound like a complete idiot.

      Heiku - 2012-02-03 11:51

      I agree. Headline has been engineered to get a reaction and they don't care if that reaction is negative or positive

      Piston - 2012-02-03 13:25

      But he is a complete idiot...

      Blip - 2012-02-03 21:40

      Just look at his pimped-up dress sense... eish!

      Zebelon - 2012-02-03 23:59

      @ Mvikeli: Some statements from a man at the head of men on the ground are not suitably for the public arena; such statements may have the tendency of influencing ungerlings.

  • ReunionofIntelligentMinds - 2012-02-03 11:51

    Pity. I liked the 'aim for the head' and even liked it better that all criminals knew it as well. Cele, you had some issues not appropriate to a Police Commissioner but I agreed with your stance against criminals.

  • Phumi - 2012-02-03 11:53

    We urge our comrades to fasttrack the MAT because the citizens are being held hostage with no recourse by the print media. Besides even if Cele said the police must necklace the suspect on the spot he does not have to apologise to any reactionary press. He was given the mandate to protect us by the masses. We are at war with criminals and can never allow our gains of the revolution to be hijacked by thugs! We must stop listening to these neo-liberals (who are beneficiaries of social injustice system) who are fighting the efforts of government of bettering the lives of citizens in every corner!

      Ze Don - 2012-02-03 12:18

      The comment above is proof that a head shot won't necessarily be a kill shot!

      Jeffrey - 2012-02-03 12:48

      You're as idiotic as Cele.

      carpejugulim - 2012-02-03 13:26

      Phumi ... did someone write that for you?

      mariuskowie - 2012-02-03 13:57

      The courts are not allowed to sentence murderers to death. According to Phumui the press is reactionary because Cele called for police to execute suspected criminals by aiming for the head. The masses did not give the government any mandate to kill its citizens!

      David - 2012-02-03 14:35

      Chill, Phumi. Reserve your "ANC talk" for the Mangaung circus in December.

      willybegood - 2012-02-03 15:03

      *gag* *vomit*

      Rob - 2012-02-03 15:54

      Yeah sure, centrol information then you can make just about anybody believe anything. Goodby democratic South Africa, hello terminal basket case. You can be sure of one thing...I will be voting against any party/candidate that supports overseas aid to South Africa if such censorship legislation is enacted.

      Mary - 2012-02-03 21:32

      At war with which criminals ? Obviously not the ones in government nor the police.

      Blip - 2012-02-03 21:41

      We? How many of you are there?

      Zebelon - 2012-02-04 00:07

      @Phumi: The mandate given to Cele did not mean unreasonable and wanton killing of persons. Otherwise, why were kanaroo courts vehemently opposed by those who think straight?

  • Christopher - 2012-02-03 11:54

    I can't help feeling like this headline is seriously misleading. Nowhere in this article is Cele actually quoted as saying that ridiculous statement, and the statement of his that is quoted actually seems pretty reasonable. I'm no Cele fan, but I'm also not a fan of sensationalist headlines designed to get views. If a criminal pulls a gun on you, you better bloody well aim for the head.

      Lorenzo - 2012-02-03 12:36

      Thank you! I was just about to ask if I’m the only one who actually read the article, or at least understand what was being said in it… So allow me to quote (meaning copy & paste): "If the police officer had aimed for the head, the suspect and not the officer would have been buried instead." In reading that, I can’t understand most of the comments here… maybe you all WHO just reads misleading headlines should be shot in the head to locate your brains, maybe it would help you guys not to ridicule someone knowing how ridiculous you really are! …just saying…

  • Rudolph - 2012-02-03 11:55

    It's common knowledge that "aim for the head" actually means let's go for a beer. The froth on the draft is affectionately known as "the head". Can hardly believe anybody could get this wrong. Also remember to eat your beetroot this weekend before sacking up with the Mrs.

      Mary - 2012-02-03 12:25

      Monty Python fans of the world Unite !!

  • Warren - 2012-02-03 11:56

    hahahahaha aim for the head does not mean you should kill them LOKL. this is hilarious.... Well Done CELE

      Ben Nel - 2012-02-03 12:18

      I assume it's not a vital organ then?

      Mary - 2012-02-03 12:26

      Hardly Ben, harly. In many cases it is a hidden decorative ornament, with little practical value. Maybe it makes a good paperweight.

      E=MC2 - 2012-02-03 15:18

      @Ben - only vital if there's something there that can be damaged i.e a brain! the criminals in this country should be safe if shot in the head

  • Barbara - 2012-02-03 12:02

    Every utterance from this Cele fool is beyond comprehension, logic or understanding. What the heck was he saying? I don't think even he knows what he is talking about, and when he opens his mouth only rubbish comes out of it. And this is one of our leaders!!!

      Zipho Ka Nomafu Myaluza - 2012-02-03 14:15

      and I bet u were applauding when he said shoot to kill,u the hypocrite here,dumbf#$*

      Mary - 2012-02-03 21:36

      @ Zipho: In the beginning, Yes. Then it became clear that he was no better than the criminals he was supposedly against. SO, anyone who still supports him can only have criminal tendencies too.

      illaswart - 2012-02-05 14:00

      @ zipho: a bit angry i see? such a typical response from an anc supporter when someone has the balls to be straightforward regarding our government's patheticism: anger or denial. sometimes both. now that's a classic.

  • jhavenga1 - 2012-02-03 12:05

    It means......... ankle trip him ????

  • Phumi - 2012-02-03 12:05

    It is an open secret that we have militarised our police service to be a force constitutionally. We did this because we are at war with criminals! During the confrontaion a soldier cannot afford to be giving his enemy roses they must gun powder! Cele should not be in that court he should be behind his desk doing what he does best!

      David - 2012-02-03 12:19

      Yes i agree he should be behind his desk, but wait then he will just be waisting taxpayers money again.

      Mary - 2012-02-03 21:38

      What does he do best ?? Waste taxpayer's money ! Nah, cut his pension and get rid of him.

      Zebelon - 2012-02-04 00:13

      @Phumi: Take note that Cele is the plaintif; do you not realise that he called for the court appearence - he wants payment.

      Keith - 2012-02-04 08:11

      What does he do best?

  • Monica - 2012-02-03 12:10


  • Josh - 2012-02-03 12:10

    They should aim for your head mate. Not saying they should kill you. Just that they should aim for your head.

  • dhopwood3 - 2012-02-03 12:14

    Wouldn't have thought taking off the ear lobe would be much deterrent: did I miss the point

  • Dan - 2012-02-03 12:18

    Everyone should understand that the "aim for the head" statement was taken out of context! Typical politician's excuse! What an idiot!

  • Wanda - 2012-02-03 12:25

    The same people who were applauding Cele's work (to be specific, the same statement that is under scrutiny now) while he was still in charge have now turned against him. It was you who said criminals deserve to die. I personally do not wish death on anyone but I certainly would not lose my sleep over a criminal who gets shot on the head nor toe for that matter for breaking into my house.

  • Matshidiso - 2012-02-03 12:30

    Well it seems like everybody agrees that media needs to be monitored externally. Like ANC wants.

      Leon - 2012-02-03 12:47

      Yea so we can go back to Apartheid again...?

      illaswart - 2012-02-05 13:51

      from what planet are you from?!?

  • Thozi - 2012-02-03 12:41

    I don't know what's defaming about that command because I actually agree that criminals, especially violent ones and rapists, be "shot in the head".

      Jeffrey - 2012-02-03 12:58

      There's little doubt that emotionally we would all love to shoot the scumbags in the head, unfortunately it's generally regarded as illegal to to around shooting people in the head, even for policemen. That's why we have laws.

      Mary - 2012-02-03 21:40

      Problem is Jeff, there are too many people who are still alive only because it's illegal to kill them.

  • dingisoml - 2012-02-03 12:47

    Maybe Cele really didn't think that aiming for the head would kill anybody. But how? I guess not much stays in his head so he thought it's the most useless part of the human body. Or he is just being a politician... lying with a straight face.

  • Daveu - 2012-02-03 12:55

    Why must Cele apologise and explainfor his comment? reading todays news about the violant acts commited of late he should stick to his guns and say ye, if the crimminals commit such acts of violance - SHOOT THEM DEAD. The state will only protect them and treat them better than us citizens. I say this with the intent that if a policemans life /welfare is in danger not for random police thuggery

  • Peter - 2012-02-03 13:13

    Rather just shut up, you d00s. Everytime you open your mouth you spew out a bunch of crap.

  • Morton - 2012-02-03 13:17

    The ANC will do nothing about crime,because they are themselves all criminals and in this country crime does pay. every time you have something stolen, you buy a new one, the ANC gets 14% VAT out of you and an ANC supporter gets something for free.

  • Piston - 2012-02-03 13:24

    I think he has post traumatic job disorder...

  • Dianne - 2012-02-03 13:37

    Does that mean that criminals don't have brains so you won't die if someone shoots you in the head?

  • Letjitlane - 2012-02-03 14:13

    Proverbs!! Parables!! Figurative or something, aiming to the head cannot mean something else except aiming to the head and cannot be defended by a normal person

  • Jennifer - 2012-02-03 14:32

    perhaps he meant to Take their noses and ears off...

  • Rob - 2012-02-03 14:48

    This is denialism taken to its logical conclusion. First we have...don't do as I do, do as I say! Now we have....whatever I say doesn't mean what I say. I cannot think of the next step, anyway it is irellevant, long ago the SA authorities became discredited (you only have to recall beetroot lady), and not much later I decided that anything that is said by anyone in authority in SA is likely to be a waste of breath. Bananas anyone?

      Mary - 2012-02-03 21:57

      Are those bananas beetroot flavoured ??

  • Kusleg - 2012-02-03 15:07

    Why back tracking Mr Cele? What is wrong with an armed thug being hit in the head? Police officers must demonstrate why they are carrying guns and the demonstration is most welcome when they come face to face with with armed criminals. No need for mincing words Mr Cele.....armed thieves / criminals must die buy the bullet and l for one support you hundred percent on that one. Our criminal courts will always release these scumbags. Your boys must wipe them out....!

  • slritchie - 2012-02-03 15:31

    hahahaha in his case, a shot to the backside would be fatal..... a head shot would just cause a headache!

  • Hilton - 2012-02-03 18:50

    Disappointed in Cele's backtracking - police must have freedom to fire whenever required without fear of investigation & prosecution. That's what they there for - to maintain law and order (the old ministry name). It's in the government's interest too - gid rid of those not suitable for this country and eventually land up with citizens who are dutiful and disciplined. I'm sure most people would accept one or two innocent casulties for every few thousands of criminals killed.