SAPS needs 'experienced & qualified leadership'

The ISS says the SAPS needs better leadership to professionalise the service.

The ISS says the SAPS needs better leadership to professionalise the police service. Picture: Sapa

CAPE TOWN - The Institute for Security Studies says experienced and qualified leadership is needed in order to improve levels of professionalism in the South African Police Service (SAPS).

On Tuesday, Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa told members of Parliament that recruitment problems and a failure to effectively manage stations were only some of the issues affecting the SAPS.

He discussed police brutality, amongst other issues, with the department of police's parliamentary portfolio committee.

The ISS's Gareth Newham says the minister needs to start at the very top if he truly wants an effective police service.

"The same problems occur over and over again and until we start putting in top-notch officers at the top of the organisation we're going to continue this way."

But Mthethwa says recruiting the right kind of individuals is a "major problem".

He says his department is looking into publishing the names of new recruits before they are sent off for training.

"The public would then [be able to make] comments. If there are no adverse comments on individuals we'll take it that this person is accepted."

Speaking to the National Assembly last week, President Jacob Zuma rejected the Democratic Alliance's call for a commission of inquiry into police brutality.