acting STATION COMMISSIONER CAPE TOWN
28 April 2000
POLICING POWERS FOR THE SANDF, WHEN IN SUPPORT OP THE SAPS
1. I am a Senior Superintendent in the SAPS and currently stationed as the Head of Crime Prevention of Cape Town Central Police Station.
2. I have undertaken to give an input on this matter in my individual capacity based on my various experiences with working with the SANDF.
3. The assistance provided by the SANDF to the SAPS is invaluable.
4. The use of the SANOF to assist the SAPS in policing and increasing its powers to do so effectively is a welcomed paradigm shift.
5. Human Resource, Financial and Logistical attrition is taking its toll on the SAPS. Some police stations am struggling just to provide basic services to their communities and uphold certain responsibilities placed onto them.
6 If the SANDF is called upon to assist the SAPS in delivering basic services the following additional powers needs to be granted to them:
6.1 Powers of arrest and powers to search and seize
When SANDF personnel take part in operations with the SAPS they should be given similar powers as police officers.
At the moment they only detain the suspect and await for the arrival of the police officer to make the actual arrest.
7. For SANDF personnel to be utilised optimally when assisting the SAPS certain regulations governing their deployment needs to be revisited.
7.1 The use of the R4 rifle is not feasible in certain types of duties, for example doing foot patrols in less dangerous suburbs where SANDF members am used for crime prevention duties of non violent crimes like housebreaking, theft, etcetera.
It is suggested that the R4 rifle be replaced with a smaller handgun.
7.2 Depending on the type of crime prevention duty performed, some latitude should exist for SANOF personnel to dress in civilian clothes if the type of duty performed demands it.
7.3 The deployment of soldiers can only be permitted in the form of regulated numbers, for example only in groups, platoons and sections The lowest denomination of deployment being the section (10 members).
Some latitude should exist for deployment of individual members to perform a certain type of duty, example a single soldier to act as a van crew with a uniformed police officer attending general complaints of the community.
Furthermore a couple of members should have the capacity to be deployed to perform duties like court orderlies in our lower and higher courts when we are experiencing our biggest staff shortages.
8. The SANDF plays an important role to augment the SAPS in performing its daily functions. The delivery of basic policing to our communities and state institutions is being affected by poor staff shortages in the SAPS.
The SANDF can play a critical role to assist the SAPS in duties other than come prevention only, in order for the criminal justice system to function effectively.
For example; a simple duty like escorting prisoners to and from the prisons to courts, assisting in the staffing of courts can contribute to basic service delivery.
acting STATION COMMISSIONER CAPE TOWN (K HARRI)