Police Minister, Bheki Cele, says efforts to curb crime have not yielded the expected results.
He added that all structures within the national police force now need to do things differently to get those desired outcomes.
The main things that will be addressed are the officers’ working conditions and their engagement with communities.
Cele says 50% of solutions to crime is through better working conditions with communities:
“We need deeper partnerships with communities built on trust, commitment, and delivery. It is on this score that this Ministry will continue to lend support to aggressively restore the trust deficit that has broken down some in communities. After all, police officers cannot police communities they are not part of. But equally, we are aware that trust is not bought, trust is earned”.
Cele says the cops that often fail these communities are the ones in lower ranks.
He has thus instituted an accountability plan, which will be led by the commanders each station.
“We have adopted a police station policing approach. This means accountability will start from the bottom (at stations) and escalate right up to the very top. The Station Accountability Plan will fully work, if ALL station Commanders are empowered and supported through by management”.