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Over 2 000 officers vaccinated thus far

Police Minister Bheki Cele welcomes the vaccination of police officers.

The SAPS vaccination programme, launched on July 7, is gaining momentum with 1 000 more officers vaccinated.

On day two of the programme, a total of 2 055 vaccines had been administered to police officers and support personnel at both the Orlando Stadium in Soweto and the SAPS Tshwane Academy vaccination sites.

At Orlando Stadium, 760 members were vaccinated, bringing the total number of members who have been vaccinated over the first two days at the site to 1 285.

At SAPS Tshwane Academy, a total of 770 members had been vaccinated over two days.

National Police Commissioner General Khehla Sithole, the first uniformed officer to get the vaccine on July 5. Photograph: Captain Jeff Phora.

Constance Makhaye (58), a cleaner at the SAPS Tshwane Academy, was among those who got vaccinated on day two. She was elated to have finally received the vaccine.

“I am happy about today. I was initially scared to vaccinate, now that I have received my vaccine, I am going to encourage my other colleagues to be the next in line.”

Captain Daniel Dhanarajan (48), a trainer attached to the SAPS Atteridgeville Academy, said he was relieved to know that his colleagues, family and himself will be safe and guarded against Covid”.

As of Tuesday evening, the number of members that tested positive for the virus remains 32 565. The number of recoveries still stands at 30 955, but the number of members that have died has risen to 673.

While vaccination is voluntary, the SAPS continues to encourage all members to get vaccinated in a bid to operate optimally in serving and protecting the people of South Africa.

National Police Commissioner General Khehla Sithole at Orlando Stadium. Photograph: Captain Jeff Phora.

Vaccinating the members does not mean police should stop adhering to the non-pharmaceutical health and safety protocols. The Service will continue to ensure that all health and safety protocols at all service points remain in place and are adhered to by members.

SAPS in consultation with the Department of Health said that there are exclusion criteria for vaccination. This means that there are those who will not qualify to be vaccinated.

Police Minister Bheki Cele take his jab at Orlando Stadium. Photograph: Captain Jeff Phora.

The following members will be excluded:

· Anyone who has contracted Covid-19 in the last 30 days

· Any person who has received a flu vaccine within 14 days

· Any member who has been vaccinated prior to SAPS vaccination rollout program commencing

The SAPS continues to monitor preparations in place for the nationwide rollout at all 108 registered sites. The provincial rollouts will commence on July 8 in eight provinces.

Gauteng will be the last province to roll out its vaccination drive from July 9.

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