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By Kekeletso Nakeli

Columnist


A nation under siege: SA must police the police

There's a growing crisis of trust in SA's police system, prompting the need for accountability and reform to restore faith in law and order.


The police who police us have gone rogue. Be it an element of criminality or the psychological pressures, or police are feared more than reliable.

As a country, it is easy to believe that there is no longer any faith in the justice system.

That a child molester can be granted bail and scared off with a mere R2 000 bail warning and a reminder to report to a police station within their jurisdiction every Monday is nothing but laughable.

That a murderer who butchers cash in transit security personnel can be granted bail and considered a community leader – that a 24- and 26-year-old can brazenly kill security guards who are in the very area to serve and protect – that in itself is a sign that we are living in terms of a vacuum of law and order.

The public cannot be blamed for being left with no faith in the men and women in blue and the courts that follow – Lady Justice in South Africa has lost all visibility.

We are a nation under siege. While there are those officers who go over and above the call of duty, some who even lose their lives off duty.

While there are lawyers, judges and magistrates who love their calling and cannot be bought; we have to honestly admit that those very two important facets of public order are littered with rotten apples who spoil a bag in its entirety.

Two security guards lose their lives, a squad of policemen go toe-to-toe with the murderers, possibly even civilians risk their lives in alerting the police of the suspects whereabouts – all the risk, all the danger.

Imagine if they were apprehended and not killed, only for pockets to be lined and within the month they roamed the streets and the security of the country’s residents was threatened again?

It makes one even beg the question, how and when did it become so commonplace that children so young could be so careless about the value of human life?

In light of the dangers of the job, the blue light brigade keeps giving us reasons to say wow, they are just the negative gift that keeps on giving.

Be it psychological distress or good cops gone bad, we are now at a point where we have to police the police. This leaves very little to be desired!