Saps liabilities increasing - DA

2012-10-17 22:29

Johannesburg - Financial liabilities and lawsuits incurred by police have quadrupled in the past six years, the Democratic Alliance said on Wednesday.

"The... [SA Police Service annual] report shows the financial implications of the lack of discipline and professionalism in the police service," DA MP Dianne Kohler Barnard said in a statement.

The figure for contingent liabilities - a liability that police might have to pay depending on the outcome of a future event, such as a court case - quadrupled in the past six years from R5.3bn in 2006 to R20.5bn in 2011/2012.

"It now constitutes 32.8% of the SAPS annual budget. The bulk of this... [percentage] is made up of civil claims against the police amounting to R14.8bn," Kohler Barnard said.

Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa's spokesperson Zweli Mnisi said the police allocated a certain amount of money towards litigation and lawsuits each year, but not all of it was used.

"This is why the management has been able to redirect some of this under-utilised finance to other crime-fighting programmes," he said.

According to the DA, civil claims currently instituted against the police included for this financial year were R1.09bn in claims relating to shooting incidents, R182m for vehicle accidents, R8.2m for damage to state property, and R484m in legal expenses.

It also included R2.7m in claims related to damage to property, R841m relating to assaults, and R11.9bn for other claims relating to "police action".

"These increasing figures, once again, illustrate the effect the militarisation of the SAPS has had on the service. Police officers should not be assaulting or shooting innocent people," Kohler-Barnard said.

Randomly shooting

Mnisi said that if Kohler-Barnard had "substantial evidence" that police were "randomly shooting innocent people", she needed to produce it.

"Why would anyone make a sweeping and generalistic (sic) statement... [as] if the whole 200 000-plus members have shot innocent people?" he asked.

"It is unfair to the many hard-working cops who put their lives at risk to safeguard society."

Kohler-Barnard said she had asked Mthethwa a Parliamentary question in relation to the "demilitarisation" of the police, and would also write to him to find out his plan for demilitarisation as recommended by the National Development Plan.

"The Saps needs to return to its former pre-Cele glory, to a time before he and his cronies instilled a lack of professionalism and culture of police brutality into what should be a police service, and not an apartheid-era force," she said.

Mnisi said managerial practices at police stations were being improved, and the relationship between police and society was being "deepened".

"We have long emphasised that whatever you call police generals, doctors or angels, that is immaterial," he said.

"What becomes crucial is the philosophical orientation of the police officers - to make officers understand their conviction - which is to uphold and respect the Constitution."

  • Desilusionada - 2012-10-17 23:00

    How can they do all this when some cannot drive, shoot, read properly and are deployed in areas where they cannot speak the language of those they are supposed to serve? So lets say she exaggerated by 100%. Then we still have a problem that could feed a couple of children or put them through school?

  • dejaay.heineken - 2012-10-17 23:44

    Otherwise I think democracy is not understandable in south africa or sum ppl take it for granted mybe! And we want to blame da ruling party if things turn sour! I had never heared swaziland ,nigeria,chana or congo had vilolent strike dat ppl burns shops,damage property cos they knw dats wrong even china but here in our lovly contry dat we got democracy we abuse it and we wil end up back to apartheid if we don't open our own eyes and u wil remember my words mybe! Dats stupid and useless wht ppl doing rather dan we must try bust da economy so dat things must be less but we do corruption which will lead us to kill each other but end up in apartheid and won't be gud trust me for dose who sucriface for their life for it those days!

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-10-18 10:36

      You are depriving your village somewhere of an idiot. HAMBA manje.

  • Erna - 2012-10-17 23:59

    Once again the ministry is basically denying that there are huge problems in the police force - from illiteracy, to corruption, to bad (no) training, to gross unfitness and obesity.

  • zolisa.dlokovu - 2012-10-18 00:24

    Its a bad situation.The dept needs help

  • fort.horseman.7 - 2012-10-18 00:43

    saps,GOD created life,and when ur arrogance empowered you to show vile disrespect and redicule for it,and dehumanised its God Given Dignity,then you initiated a declaration of war with God.goodluck!

      fort.horseman.7 - 2012-10-18 00:53

      Your liabilities towards peoples humanity due to your ego fueled arrogance ,is beyond what you capable of comprehending! If you are soulless do not underestimate the punishment for the violation of the soulfull.

      fort.horseman.7 - 2012-10-18 01:25

      I have requested to adress their attrocities on countless occasions,only to be met with evasiveness and avoidance,is it the guilt or the Truth, that they dont want to confront?

  • john.morreira.9 - 2012-10-18 05:13

    BBBEE in action.

      blip.noodlum - 2012-10-18 05:55

      Policing -- a public service -- isn't economic empowerment at all, black or otherwise.

  • blip.noodlum - 2012-10-18 05:42

    A third of the entire police budget spent on defending themselves against lawsuits. If they did their job properly, that spend-up would be zero.

      dewalds3 - 2012-10-18 08:12

      Libtard-flopstaat in all it's glory, OU! It was never going to be any different..

  • nthete.moalosi - 2012-10-18 06:09

    Eh thats a waste of my hard earned tax money.

  • raymond.kok3 - 2012-10-18 06:42

    to deejy.heinekin the problem is not the weapon its the person behind the weapon,first and foremost the police must realize that in order to become a policeman you have to become A POLITICAL for the dumb ones that means to serve without fear or favour. Secondly in the training phases the unstable and untrainable ones need to be kicked out ,but in our country this does not happen. People are given guns and reasponsibilties that they cannot handle, they are made super humans and they act out these roles and they become complacent the law was on their side all the time they just dont know how to use it because they sometimes never even passed their training period in the police college.most of them cannot take down a simple statement, they never study further, they never seek to improve themselves.some has drivers licence but cannot even start a vihicle so like i said its not the gun its the idiot behind the gun.For as long as the police generals are sticking their heads in the sand ,we will pay and keep on paying thats the long and short of it

  • Andile Zide - 2012-10-18 07:04

    it seems like we don't understand, the people that complain about police actions are those that never been helped by police, or those who are the culprits, south africa i corrupt, so people of our communities are enjoying life unlawfully, buy selling drugs and being members of the gangsters, other always cover for skolies.

  • Andrea - 2012-10-18 08:21

    It takes but a few rotten apples to change the opinion of a nation ... unfortunately it also attracts some more rotten apples along the way until it seems that that is all there is.

  • 247legal - 2012-10-18 13:13

    Due to "slap gat" attitude, lack of accountability and gross incompetence tax payers funds are wasted every minute of the day. The liability is not only endemic in the police but all government and municipal departments and hospitals. Many politicians and high ranking officers are consumed with the notion - "WHAT IS IN IT FOR ME"

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