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Parly committee raises concerns over state of police readiness

The committee has raised the issue following four incidents this week, which it believes have highlighted weaknesses in intelligence gathering and operation deployment.

FILE: Members of the South African Police Service escort a group of COSATU members through the Cape Town CBD on 1 May 2018. Picture: Cindy Archillies/EWN

PRETORIA – Parliament’s Police Portfolio Committee has raised serious concerns about the state of readiness of the South African Police Service (SAPS).

The committee has raised the issue following four incidents this week, which it believes have highlighted weaknesses in intelligence gathering and operation deployment.

The announcement comes days after Police Minister Bheki Cele and National Police Commissioner Khehla Sitole announced a new strategy to tackle aggravated robbery.

Parliament’s police portfolio says there is an urgent need for better security and safety measures at police stations.

This week alone, two police vehicles were burnt in the Overberg, live ammunition was used at protests in Gauteng and the Western Cape because of a lack of public order policing.

Police officers were also robbed of their firearms at the Edenpark Police Station on the East Rand.

Sitole will have to explain why assurances given by police management were not followed through.

It says the general will also have to account for the theft of an R5 rifle because there appears to be a lack of command and control.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)