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Deputy President Mabuza calls for active partnership between Police and Communities

Pretoria : 1 September 2019 - Deputy President David Mabuza today, Sunday 01 September 2019, officiated at the annual South African Police Service Commemoration Day at the SAPS Memorial Site, Union Buildings, Pretoria.

Hosted by the Department of Police the event is held annually on the first Sunday of September, to honor the men and women in blue who sacrificed and ultimately lost their lives in the execution of their duties.

This year, government paid homage to 27 police officers including a reservist who served the people of South Africa with distinction until their last breath. The 27 members were killed in the line of duty during the period of 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019.

As part of the Commemoration activities, the Deputy President together with the Minister of Police, General Bheki Cele, National Commissioner of the South African Police Service, General Khehla Sitole and the next of kin of the fallen heroes and heroines, laid wreaths in honour of the deceased members.

During his welcoming address, the Minister of Police, General Bheki Cele hailed the fallen members for their bravery and dedication.

“The brave men and women whom we are commemorating today were the calibre of people who served and protected all the people of this country without fear or favour. The selfless patriotism these fallen heroes and heroines displayed can never be over emphasized”.

The members whose names have been added to and engraved on the South African Police Service Memorial Site at the Union Buildings include 26 males and one female member, one of which was a reservist.

His excellency, Deputy President David Mabuza made a clarion call to all citizens to play an active role in assisting police to ensure a safe and crime-free South Africa.

“Police officers are rare and steadfast compatriots who place their lives, on a daily basis on the line for the cause of keeping us all safe and protected. Partnership between the police and the public should be widely supported and strengthened by all citizens and communities. It is in active police-public partnership that we shall restore stability and order. It is in active police-public partnership that we will prevent the murders of our police officers. We emphasize this, because the maintenance of law and order is not only the function of the SAPS whose members are killed effecting arrests, responding to false-complaints, at stop and search operations, in vehicle accidents. The police service needs and requires visible and tangible cooperation from community members. Our police cannot discharge their function alone, we need your cooperation and assistance to deal decisively with crime,” said Deputy President Mabuza.

With the month of September having been declared Police Safety Month, the South African Police Service has established a Police Safety Strategy and Police Safety Plan to enhance and ensure the personal safety of officers on and off duty.

“A comprehensive Police Safety Strategy was developed and is continuously being implemented. It is intended to ensure the safety of all members. A National Police Safety Plan was also developed to strengthen the implementation of the Police Safety Strategy in an effort to eradicate or reduce attacks on and unnatural deaths of our members. We hereby call on our communities to support the Community Policing Strategy that was launched last year to ensure that we work together to reduce crime in SA and do away with the killing of our members,” said General Khehla Sitole.

Through the South African Police Service Education Trust Fund (SAPSET) which was established in 2010, the Department of Police is able to provide for the educational needs of the deceased members’ children from Grade R to Tertiary Level. This includes the funding of fees, stationery and uniform. To date the fund has assisted 1324 children with 42 beneficiaries having been able to complete their tertiary education. The Fund is a non-profit organisation and is funded by gifts, donations and sponsorships from private persons, firms, companies as well as employee and employer contributions.

Members of the public may also make contributions to the fund to ensure that these children receive the quality education that their fathers and mothers would have wished for them. To find out how to contribute, the public may contact the SAPSET offices in Pretoria on 012 432 7504.

Media Enquiries:

Office of the Deputy President, Sam Bopape on 082 318 5251
Ms Lirandzu Themba 082 884 7106
SAPS Brigadier Vish Naidoo 0825674153
Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo - +2782 567 4153
Colonel Athlenda Mathe 0820408808

Issued by the Department of Police.