Rorisang Kgosana
Premium Journalist
2 minute read
6 Jun 2018
6:05 am

Cop killings: ‘Dad left to work overtime – and never came back’

Rorisang Kgosana

When police officers are killed, they leave behind traumatised children who are robbed of their parents, an anti-police killing campaign heard.

The SAPS hold a anti-police killings awareness campaign in Soshanguve, 5 June 2018, the campaign was to highlight awareness in response to the increasing number of police murders and attacks. Picture: Tracy Lee Stark

The murder of a police officer amounts to more than just murder – it also robs children of moments with their father or mother who died at the hands of criminals.

During the South African Police Service’s anti-police killing campaign in Soshanguve yesterday, Judith Mafafo, 21, told the community about the 2014 killing of her father, Captain Alpheus Mafafo.

Judith Mafafo speaks about her father dying while on duty at the SAPS anti-police killings awareness campaign in Soshanguve, 5 June 2018. Picture: Tracy Lee Stark

“My father, who served as a police officer for more than 20 years, died in the line of duty. The sad part is, he was not supposed to be at work that day.

“Because of the nature of his work, and how demanding it is, he was called to work overtime. But he never came back,” said the emotional Mafafo.

The police embarked on an anti-police killing campaign in response to the number of police attacks and murders.

The SAPS hold an anti-police killings awareness campaign in Soshanguve, 5 June 2018. Picture: Tracy Lee Stark

National Police Commissioner General Khehla Sitole and several police officers conducted road blocks near the stadium to encourage residents to speak out against police killings.

“It’s disappointing to see how many police officers are killed,” Mafafo said. “It should stop because these people who are killed are our fathers. When you kill a police officer, we are being robbed of moments with our fathers.

“I am going to graduate and he won’t be there. I won’t have anyone to walk me down the aisle one day. Imagine how many other children are going through this.”

The SAPS hold an anti-police killings awareness campaign in Soshanguve, 5 June 2018. The campaign was to highlight awareness in response to the increasing number of police murders and attacks. Picture: Tracy Lee Stark

Between April 1 last year and March 31 this year, 85 police officers were killed on and off duty nationally.

But police have identified several strategies to ensure their members are safe, deputy national police commissioner Lieutenant-General Bonang Mgwenya said.

“Hardly a week goes by in our country without media coverage of cold-blooded and merciless murders of, and attacks on, our police members. Most of these police officers who are ruthlessly murdered are young and in the prime of their careers.

“The sad reality is that they leave behind orphaned children with an uncertain future. If only these criminals could feel the pain of having to live permanently without your sole provider, mother or father, husband or wife, brother or sister,” Mgwenya said.

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