National police commissioner General Khehla Sitole has condemned the murder of two officers who were attacked while patrolling a Cape Town suburb in the early hours of Sunday.
The sergeant, 46, and a colonel, 28, were killed in Bloekombos on Sunday.
“National commissioner General Khehla Sitole has conveyed his condolences to the families of two police officers killed while on duty in Western Cape this morning [Sunday]. The National Commissioner has condemned this murders and has ordered that the 72-hour activation plan be implemented to mobilise all the resources needed to investigate this case,” said spokesperson Colonel Brenda Muridili in a statement.
“The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation [Hawks] has been assigned to investigate the circumstances surrounding this heinous act that seeks to undermine the authority of the state.”
The officers’ vehicle came under attack along Phumla Street.
It’s understood that they were both shot in the head while still inside the vehicle.
The killers then stole their official firearms before fleeing the scene.
Meanwhile, Police Minister Bheki Cele on Sunday joined mourners at the funeral of Durban police officer Royal Ndlovu.
Ndlovu was killed when he and a colleague responded to a domestic violence incident in Chatsworth two weeks ago. Ndlovu was shot in the chest above his bulletproof vest by a gunman inside the house, and died instantly.
His partner returned fire, killing the gunman.
The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) said it was distraught by the continuous reports of police killings.
“Part of the problem can be attributed to the challenges of understaffing and the uneven allocation of resources to these men and women in blue; therefore having to stretch their operations across a broader number of community populations in smaller groups, increasing their likelihood of being attacked,” said Popcru spokesperson Richard Mamabolo.
“It is a challenge that will continue if no urgent action is taken in ensuring more boots on the ground, and we call on police officers to remain vigilant, and to act decisively in the case they come across such ill-intended people who have developed the audacity to raise firearms at them, but also to take precautionary measures when carrying out their work, especially within the environments they patrol.”