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Key Note Remarks by the Deputy Minister of Police, Hon. Ms. Makhotso Maggie Sotyu (MP) at the SAPS/UNISA School of Business Leadership Graduation Ceremony.
27 August 2015

Programme Director,
National Commissioner of Police, General Phiyega,
All SAPS Top Management present,
Our SAPS Partners, UNISA representatives,
Graduating Police Officers,
All Police Officers present,
Distinguished Guests,

I was totally inspired by the yesterday’s input on “Leadership”, which has led me to focus on this aspect for today’s brief message to the graduating senior women police officers.

You are specifically graduating from the UNISA School of Business Leadership, which means “leadership” is one of the core traits that a Manager must have to efficiently and effectively manage.

We have a hope that these graduates do acknowledge that, as much as our society constantly progresses and changes, so will the understanding/definition of the phenomenon “Leadership” evolve.

It is a fact that what we learned on leadership skills as 19-year old undergraduate university students, would have surely drastically evolved or been outdated by the time we are 50 years old.

The more complex the society becomes, the more sophisticated leadership must be, as the society is rapidly being unpredictable and non-linear.

And, as leaders in the making, we need to accept this, lest we become dangerous authoritarian leaders, whose subordinates have neither a space to engage nor the right to query instructions.

Therefore, we must know that an evolving leadership is that accepts change for the better; and that begins on peoples’ terms, driven by their wants and needs for a better livelihood.

A leader that accepts inevitable change in society, will be able to know who s/he serves, and will also know when and how to create a vision that is based on credible scenarios of the future.

As you graduate today, you must immediately prepare for a public service official in the South African Police Service, that is active and well informed about the community s/he serves as a police officer.

Your qualification from UNISA therefore, must not only be about acquiring knowledge, skill and information for yourselves.

It must also be about interweaving and mainstreaming the core values of the Constitution, Social Justice, Equity, Good Governance, Development, Service Delivery and Democracy, in order to develop the full potential of the people you manage and lead.

This means, leadership is not simply a pure administrative and operational call. It must also integrate service delivery so that you, as police officers are able to respond to challenges imposed by various negative factors in South Africa,

Today’s global slowing economy; sophisticated organized crimes; cyber crimes; unemployment; poverty; and still persistent unequal society; are multiple challenges, that require a strong collective, expertise and experienced SAPS Management to bear on these challenges.

These challenges are risk factors that have impact on the success or failure in crime prevention.

True leaders in the SAPS Management will then recognize that, crime prevention will never be achieved if you do not coordinate and integrate your efforts in an honest and transparent manner; if you do not innovate your approaches by reviewing what is no longer working for your police officers’ development (outdated policies).

I will thus repeat what I said last year during the SAPS Top 1500 Conference, that was held in Durban. I said, we couldn’t just empower people through academic education without making them to understand that, the training, knowledge, information and expertise acquired, are beyond empowerment.

A police officer needs to embrace that fact that, his/her role is not only about fighting crime; it is also about instilling confidence and hope in citizens’ minds when they see a police officer.

It is about calming an anxious citizen when s/he is in fear of falling victim to crime.

And, to get that kind of a police officer, we need an emotional intelligent and transformed leader, who will be radical in executing the vision of the National Development Plan.

We need a multi-skilled, emotionally intelligent leader who is tolerant of diversity, who will be able to place the interest and needs of the people the SAPS serves. As Leaders, we must put the citizens we serve at the centre of SAPS frontline services and operations.

True leaders must ensure service delivery is not compromised by greed, cruelty, self-centeredness, selfishness and cynicism against our most vulnerable members of our society (the poor, the disabled, the elderly, women and children).

  As I will sit down, I would like to leave you with a quote from one of the greatest leaders of optimism and courage, who had a vision to see the path of hope, who called for action with a language that engaged a community, and ultimately a nation, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr:


“Cowardice asks the question – is it safe?
Expediency asks the question – is it politic?
Vanity asks the question – is it popular?
But, CONSCIENCE asks the question – is it right?
And, there comes a time, when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular;
But, one must take it because it is RIGHT.” CLOSE QUOTE.
I thank you all.


Ms Nomsa Hani
Head of Office & Spokesperson
Cell: +27 (0) 82 772 2053

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