• Bullying is a serious issue in schools. We remind about the relevant legislation and definitions in the first of three articles about dealing with school bullies. Read this article in the December 2017 issue of Servamus.

    Bullying is a serious issue in schools. We remind about the relevant legislation and definitions in the first of three articles about dealing with school bullies. Read this article in the December 2017 issue of Servamus.

  • The SAPS is adamant that they want to deal with police members who lead double lives and are susceptible to corrupt activities. All SAPS employees should read this article in the December 2017 issue of Servamus about what it being done to root out corruption.

    The SAPS is adamant that they want to deal with police members who lead double lives and are susceptible to corrupt activities. All SAPS employees should read this article in the December 2017 issue of Servamus about what it being done to root out corruption.

  • Are you a sucker for #FakeNews? We share valuable tips how to distinguish between the good, the bad and the ugly in the December 2017 issue of Servamus.

    Are you a sucker for #FakeNews? We share valuable tips how to distinguish between the good, the bad and the ugly in the December 2017 issue of Servamus.

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By Annalise Kempen

During the first weekend of October 2017, there was a huge outcry on social media following the spreading of a video showing an incident at a supermarket in Gauteng where security officers assaulted a woman while her crying three-year-old toddler bore witness to her mother's ordeal. There is a similar outcry each time a member of the South African Police Service crosses the line, such as after the Marikana massacre; the Andries Tatane incident and the Mido Macia incident. The question is: is it only incidents that make headlines or cause a social media outcry that result in investigations from the "big guns"? Or is there a way in which we, as members of the community, can get involved when our "law enforcers" cross the line or don't deliver the service they are supposed to?

Background to oversight
Oversight of the police is not a new phenomenon and, according to the Gauteng Department of Community Safety, it can be traced back at least to 1992 when "a convocation of the governing party resolved that 'there will be no respect for institutions that enforce law and order unless the people respect the law. This they will do if the laws are just and if they participate both in their making and enforcement'" (GDCS, 2017).

Section 221 of the Interim Constitution of the Republic of South Africa 200 of 1993 provides for the establishment of community police forums in respect of police stations. Although the South African Police Service Act 68 of 1995 was promulgated after the Interim Constitution, it provides for the functions of community police forums and boards in section 22 and refers to section 221(2) of the Interim Constitution which reads as follows (and remains valid):

“(2) The functions of community police forums referred to in subsection (1) may include -

(a) the promotion of accountability of the Service to local communities and cooperation of communities with the Service;

(b) the monitoring of the effectiveness and efficiency of the Service;

(c) advising the Service regarding local policing priorities;

(d) the evaluation of the provision of visible police services, including -

(i) the provision, siting and staffing of police stations;

(ii) the reception and processing of complaints and charges;

(iii) the provision of protective services at gatherings;

(iv) the patrolling of residential and business areas; and

(v) the prosecution of offenders; and

(e) requesting enquiries into policing matters in the locality concerned.”

Section 206 of the (current) Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996, provides that the institution that enforces law and order is subject to civilian oversight, and specifically provides provincial governments with a mandate to, among others:

  • monitor police conduct;
  • oversee the effectiveness and efficiency of the police service; and
  • promote good relations between the police and the community.

In line with this constitutional provision, the South African Police Service Act 68 of 1995 urges the relevant Member of the Executive Council to call on provincial commissioners of police to establish Community Police Forums (CPFs). In short, these bodies, comprising both civilians and SAPS members, are entrusted to execute key activities aimed at ensuring that people participate both in the identification of crime challenges at local level and the development of strategies to resolve these challenges. Pillar 3 of the National Crime Prevention Strategy, 1996, similarly advocates for meaningful participation of citizens in combating crime. The Civilian Secretariat for Police Act 2 of 2011 reveals the same policy consistency - section 17 of this Act advocates for, among others, the promotion of community police relations and enhancement of community safety structures within each province (GDCS, 2017).

In their publication entitled Handbook on police accountability, oversight and integrity, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC, 2011) makes it clear that "efforts to enhance police oversight and accountability must focus on three key, related priorities". Where policing has been militarised and where it tends to be undemocratic and authoritarian, efforts must be made to enhance civilian control over the police. The second priority is to increase public confidence in the police by upgrading levels of police service delivery as well as by investigating and acting in cases of police misconduct, while the last priority deals with reducing police corruption (UNODC, 2011).

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[This is only an extract of an article published on pp 10-13 in Servamus: November 2017. The rest of this article deals with the existing oversight structures and then it discusses the role of civilian oversight and give practical examples of how it can be done on station level – a must read for everyone involved in CPFs. Contact Servamus’s offices to request the rest of this interesting article by sending an e-mail to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by phoning (012) 345 4660/22.]

Servamus - December 2017

A Free State farmer responded to an OLX advert from someone selling animal feed. "I wanted to buy cattle feed, so I deposited the R21 000 immediately after I verified the seller's banking details," he said.
By Kotie Geldenhuys
During mid-October 2017, social media was awash with the news that approximately 30 million South Africans' personal information had been hacked.
By Annalise Kempen
There is no positive light in which to paint the latest crime statistics released by the Minister of Police, Fikile Mbalula, on 24 October 2017.
By Annalise Kempen
Ben is a 14-year-old teenage boy who comes across the online game the Blue Whale. While playing this game, he has to complete one challenge after another.
By Kotie Geldenhuys

Pollex - December 2017

Years ago, when General Motors “was still a sergeant”, the police’s motto was “Servamus et Servimus”, meaning “we protect and we serve”.
Read More - S V Phillips 2017 (1) SACR 373 (SCA)
Background Section 4(1) of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act 12 of 2004 (hereinafter referred to as Act 12 of 2004) provides as follows:
Read More - S V Setlholo 2017 (1) SACR 544 (NCK)
In this case the accused was, at the time of committing the two offences concerned, a constable in the SAPS.

Letters - December 2017

While participating in the SAPS National Half-marathon held in Rustenburg during October 2017, I decided that I wanted to run all the marathon races in the Bay during 2018.
On Wednesday 1 November 2017, at approximately 10:00, Capt B R Simpson and Const T E Ntuli from the FLASH Unit at SAPS Emanguzi were travelling along the R22 main road (Engozeni area) towards the Farazela Port of Entry at the Mozambican border.
South African communities are faced with various crimes and it has been a challenge to every citizen to play a role in bringing all perpetrators to justice by working hand-in-hand with the South African Police Service.
Members of the social crime prevention office of Emanguzi SAPS have been working hard to bring awareness to the local communities in an effort to protect the most vulnerable and youngest members in our communities.
December 2017 Magazine Cover

Servamus' Mission

Servamus is a community-based safety and security magazine for both members of the community as well as safety and security practitioners with the aim of increasing knowledge and sharing information, dedicated to improving their expertise, professionalism and service delivery standards. It promotes sound crime management practices, freedom of speech, education, training, information sharing and a networking platform.