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Cele condemns personal use of state property by police officers

The police minister, Bheki Cele, has spoken out against the abuse of state resources by officers and has urged the police to take a hard line against crime.

Cele was speaking during the launch of the National Traditional Policing Concept (NTPC) in Oakley in Bushbuckridge last Friday.

According to Cele, the NTPC is set to help reduce crime in rural villages. Bushbuckridge has been declared as one of the crime hotspots in Mpumalanga. Crime has become a headache to many traditional leaders.

“Crime is still a challenge. All of us must rise and fight against it. To the police, these resources provided are meant to work in collaboration with the traditional leaders. They are not your vehicles. I have received many complaints that officials are using the state cars for transporting their girlfriends and boyfriends, which has to stop,” he warned.

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“When they use the camera you smile, but when they use a gun, you don’t smile, you shoot back. When the dust settles, it must be clear whose dead bodies we are picking up. “We are tired of going around picking up dead bodies of the police. The president said we must train 12 000 police officials. We don’t train them to go to the grave,” Cele said.

The Congress of Traditional Leaders of South Africa’s president, Kgoshi Lameck Mokoena, said the initiative would help reduce crime within the Bushbuckridge area.

“As traditional leaders, we will work closely with the police to keep our people safe. Criminals have taken over our streets. Our people are no longer living freely. Criminals must not be protected. With this kind of partnership, I know it will help to uproot some of these unwanted elements from our communities,” he said.

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