Covid-19: Recruitment of police trainees grinds to a halt

Police Minister Bheki Cele and national police commissioner Khehla Sitole.
Police Minister Bheki Cele and national police commissioner Khehla Sitole.
Jan Gerber/News24
  • Covid-19 has made it "impossible" for the police to take in new recruits.
  • The police are still deployed for routine policing services and the Covid-19 response, but the number is withheld due to "security reasons".
  • In December, 4 971 new recruits completed their training.

It has not been possible to enlist new police recruits to start training, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

This is according to a response from Police Minister Bheki Cele and national Police Commissioner General Kehla Sitole to a parliamentary question by IFP MP Zandile Majozi.

Majozi was refused an answer on her question on how many police officers were deployed in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, due to "security reasons".

Majozi had asked

- How many police officers completed training at the latest available date?

- How many police members and reservists have been deployed to help curb the spread of Covid-19 during the different stages of the lockdown?; and whether

- The police is on track with its plans to recruit and train new members and what is the challenges in this regard?


"On 13 December 2019, 4 971 new recruits successfully completed their training," reads the answer, signed by Cele and Sitole.

"Members of the South African Police Services (SAPS) and reservists were and are still deployed for routine operations, for policing services and the enforcement of the coronavirus (Covid-19) preventative measures. It is preferred/recommended that the figures are not provided, for security reasons," reads the answer.

READ | 45 puppies dead as parvovirus hits police dog unit

"The process of finalising the SAPS 2020 Trainee Intake was at an advanced stage. However, it was unfortunately suspended, by the Minister of Police, due to the State of National Disaster and subsequent nationwide lockdown, which was announced by the President of the Republic of South Africa, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"The recruitment plan of the SAPS is currently being reviewed, in order to respond to the Covid-19 restrictions put in place, such as social distancing, restriction/suspension of large gatherings/meetings, etc."

The answer states that while other posts at the police are still being filled, the pandemic has made it "impossible" to enlist recruits at the various police training facilities.

Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
The Rugby Championship looks set to be hosted November and December, with New Zealand a likely destination. Would you be confident in the Boks defending their title?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
No, the Boks will be undercooked compared to their Australian and New Zealand counterparts.
35% - 1487 votes
The All Blacks will win easily if all the games are staged in New Zealand.
24% - 1034 votes
Underprepared or not, the Boks should jump at any sort of opportunity to play Test rugby.
41% - 1725 votes
Vote
ZAR/USD
17.20
(-0.08)
ZAR/GBP
22.49
(-0.04)
ZAR/EUR
20.24
(-0.11)
ZAR/AUD
12.26
(-0.24)
ZAR/JPY
0.16
(+0.03)
Gold
2016.30
(+2.16)
Silver
25.89
(+6.95)
Platinum
939.00
(+2.23)
Brent Crude
43.86
(+1.45)
Palladium
2132.99
(+2.41)
All Share
56248.93
(+0.75)
Top 40
51951.34
(+0.74)
Financial 15
9878.55
(+0.75)
Industrial 25
74943.49
(+0.27)
Resource 10
57327.85
(+1.31)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo