The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (POPCRU) has noted with concern the ill-informed, unfortunate and regrettable utterances attributed to the Kwa Zulu-Natal acting Provincial Police Commissioner Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi.
While addressing members of the South African Police Service (SAPS) at the Chatsworth police station, the acting Provincial Police Commissioner made uncivil and reckless remarks, saying that the SAPS had made a huge mistake in hiring Public Service Act employees within its ranks, that the SAPS can do without them, labelling them useless and further indicating that the SAPS is only meant for operational members who are part of the Police Act.
We view these baseless utterances as lacking of substance, misinformed, childish and highly undermining in that they seek to simplistically disregard the very important complementary function played by Public Service Act members within the SAPS.
These employees play a critical administrative role without which the entire SAPS would be rendered dysfunctional as there would be no coordination of functions. In their various capacities, they serve as the backbone of support for police work, and it can therefore never be acceptable or normalised for them to be insulted in the manner that such a high-ranking official in the province would want to project.
The two roles played by Public Service Act employees and Police Act members within the SAPS are complementary, and one cannot do without the other.
This is an indictment on the acting Provincial Police Commissioner’s part, and can only be seen as a reflection of his ill-intent to divide and implant discrimination amongst employees within the SAPS. POPCRU’s view of incorporating Public Service Act employees to the Police Act is a reality, and we have duly concluded a collective agreement at the Safety and Security Sectoral Bargaining Council (SSSBC), Agreement 4 of 2017 which talks to the translation of 10111 posts from the Public Service Act to the Police Act, and the process is being implemented as we speak.
We are aware that this acting Provincial Police Commissioner is hell-bent on defying this inevitable process by way of refusing to sign-off applications for members who have applied for 10111 posts.
We want to categorically state that the SAPS cannot be operated on the basis of personal views and feelings, and that such dangerous people like Mkhwanazi who lack foresight shall on their own remain in the past.
We call on the SAPS management to take action against this individual as his misinformed utterances are not what the SAPS stands for, and bring the service into disrepute.
Issued by POPCRU on 30/08/2018