JMPD and SAPS join forces for more boots on the ground

The JMPD’s TRU aims to collaborate with SAPS as a force multiplier on preventing crime in Johannesburg.

The Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) launched a Tactical Response Unit (TRU) on November 10, in Soweto, aimed at rooting out crime with a proactive approach.

The JMPD’s TRU aims to collaborate with the police as a force multiplier, focusing on preventing and combating crime in Johannesburg.

City of Johannesburg Mayor Kabelo Gwamanda said he was glad the MMC for Public Safety, Dr Mgcini Tshwaku, kept his promise about buffing up the city’s security.

“What brings us here today is the implementation of the most critical strategy, which is a safer city. Two days after being sworn in I spoke to the MMC for transport and told him to up all the JMPD forces that exist in the City of Johannesburg. The purpose was to do a thorough assessment of the strengths, weaknesses, and areas that we need to focus on; Tshwaku was able to identify a critical weakness, which is crime combating in our area of law enforcement.”

Tshwaku was delighted that the community’s desire for a tactical response unit had been realised, pledging a robust response to criminal activities.

“We are going to fight crime fire by fire. Our people are getting killed daily, and we shall respond. Any criminal pointing a gun at a police officer or community member will be met with a shoot-to-kill approach.”

Norwood Community Police Forum (CPF) chairperson Wayne Preston noted that the CPF is encouraged that the JMPD and the police will join forces as it is exceptionally important that law and order be policed in the country.

JMPD spokesperson Superintendent Xolani Fihla explained that the unit would focus on serious crimes such as kidnapping, cash-in-transit heists, illegal mining, and other issues plaguing the City of Johannesburg.

Parkview CPF chairperson Geraldine Connell said they are skeptical about the new tactical response unit that was launched.

“Over the many years that the CPF has been in existence, we have seen several projects of this nature – which sound impressive – but fizzle out with very little impact made on crime. They frequently consume a lot of funds and have limited effect. Our greatest concern is that in order to staff this new unit, JMPD will lose 30 officers from Region B.”

She added that this should not be allowed due to Region B being extremely understaffed already and JMPD can barely cope with maintaining law and order in the region.

The introduction of the JMPD Motorway Patrol Fleet was also announced, intended for daily patrols and service delivery-related policing work.

The TRU initiative will conduct daily searches, visible policing, community interactions, and crime analysis, and address issues related to domestic violence, women, children, and the elderly.

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