SAPS specialised units: Deadline needed - Zakhele Mbhele

DA MP says formation of such units are crucial if we are to win the war on serious and organised crime

Minister Nhleko needs to provide deadline for Specialised Units

19 February 2016

Following the President’s welcomed announcement in his SONA Reply Speech that specialised policing units would be reintroduced, the DA will be requesting Minister of Police, Nathi Nhleko, to provide a timetable and full plan for these units to be established. Specifically, these specialised policing units will be charged with addressing the rampant drug and illegal firearm-related crime in South Africa as part of the 'Back to Basics' turnaround strategy.

The President yesterday announced that two units, the South African Narcotics Enforcement Bureau and the National Bureau for Illegal Firearms Control and Priority Violent Crime, will be introduced.

The latest crime statistics have confirmed that drug-related crime is up by 2.4% since last year and an astronomical 182% since 2004/2005, most likely because of the disastrous Selebi-era disbandment of specialised crime units such as the Narcotics Bureau in 2006.

These units are crucial if we are to win the war on serious and organised crime and are in line with international best practice.  

This announcement is a step in the right direction to ensure our police service operates with the right priorities and is free from the current problems of being under-resourced, under-staffed and under-equipped. It will go a long way to bringing crime down and ensuring a safer South Africa for our citizens.

Only through these interventions will we see a South Africa that is safe where families are not ripped apart. The DA’s vision is one which employment opportunities are easily accessible and our people don’t have to resort to crime. A society where our SAPS is well-trained, resourced and has the trust of the people they took an oath to serve and protect. This is a society that South Africans so desperately need and deserve. This society as envisioned by the DA is the only one that South Africans can value.

Statement issued by Zakhele Mbhele MP, DA Shadow Minister of Police, 19 February 2016