Prioritise crowd control training - SAHRC

2012-10-31 18:11

Johannesburg - The training of police on crowd control should be made a priority, the SA Human Rights Commission said on Wednesday.

"When a law enforcement authority such as the police have a monopoly on the use of force, it is important that training in crowd control be a high priority," commissioner Danny Titus said in Johannesburg.

He was speaking during the SAHRC's release of its findings on the death of Andries Tatane during a service delivery protest in Ficksburg on 13 April 2011.

The investigation found the police used excessive force on Tatane, resulting in his injuries and subsequent death.

Increasingly violent protests called for more training for police to effectively control gatherings, said Titus.

"In this case, the police were not suitably equipped to manage the protest and failed to effectively regulate and monitor it."

Titus described the relationship between the SAHRC and the police as "professionally distant".

"We have had to threaten the police with court action in some cases for failing to respond to our inquiries."

He said the commission was disappointed that the police ministry and its senior management had failed to co-operate with it during the Tatane investigation.

The Democratic Alliance in the Free State said the findings indicated a coalition was needed to advocate for the basic rights of communities.

"The findings are an important first step towards truth and healing. We trust that the court will now see justice done in this matter," party leader Patricia Kopane said.

There had been 52 service delivery protests in the Free State so far this year, said Kopane.

"These numbers will increase as government continues to fall short of people's need for basic services."

  • ally.oh.7 - 2012-10-31 18:22

    How about the crowd being taught to take responsibility for its actions? Those idiots run riot and think they have the right to disregard the rights of others. Why should they be respected?

      squeegee.pilot - 2012-10-31 18:52

      There are two sides to this story: violent behavior by unruly mobs and excessive force by undisciplined police officers. This particular story is different from the attack on the cops at Marikana.

      goyougoodthing - 2012-10-31 19:13

      So sick of the leftist hippy brigade. Get real people, the police need more training in taking out murders and scum.

      Oraniaboer - 2012-10-31 19:51

      Ag please man you guys cant even run a Hoenderhok / Chickencoup preperly.

      hermann.hanekom - 2012-10-31 20:52

      I agree training of crowds to behave is a greater priority, but we live in a time where the criminal enjoys the protection while we and SAPS are dispensable.

  • morne.demeillon - 2012-10-31 18:23

    Nothing much is said about them hacking and burning police officers! Clearly they are looking and heading in the wrong direction. I blame this all on the Unions, if they can not control their members and organize a peaceful strike - so be it, let them have it!

  • eddiebant - 2012-10-31 18:40

    Danny Titus next time make sure you are in front with the police and lets hear afterwards what you have to say.Nice and easy to discuss the matter when things are calm and controlled.

  • Hercules Leonardo Giorgino - 2012-10-31 18:58

    I agree 100% but they should also instill some commen decency and self control amongst amongst members in a protesting crowd. Why must crowds always turn violent.

  • andy.mku.9 - 2012-10-31 19:34

    action must be taken against those police officers who killed Tatane

  • steve.gibson.146612 - 2012-10-31 19:39

    Everyone always talks about the constitutional rights of the protesters which I basically have no problem with. I however ask the question "what about my constitutional rights in not having to fund the replacement costs of burnt and damaged infrastructure, the costs of addittional policing. Why as a tax payer do I have to pay for this?????

      patricia.dewet.92 - 2012-10-31 19:50

      100% with you, I am sick and tired paying again and again for the same thing. They do not want it so stay without.

      penny.stone.589 - 2012-10-31 19:56

      Hear, hear! As I've said before, more rights for the criminal (e.g. Nicro) and nowt for the victim. Please update me if there is an organisation who does as much for the victim as Nicro does for their criminals.

  • zolisa.dlokovu - 2012-10-31 20:13

    Andries Tatane - his death will always be a reminder that we are not free in this country

  • berni.venter - 2012-11-01 09:37

    Andries Tatane's murder was political people! Besides, all the SAPS specialized units have been disbanded. Crowd control is a highly specialized field.

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