At least 100000 volunteers or police reservists - both men and women - are needed throughout the country to help the SAPS fight crime.
Minister of Safety and Security Charles Nqakula said on Saturday that these men and women were needed as a matter of urgency. Speaking to hundreds of people in Pietermaritzburg on Saturday at the launch of the programme of action of the KwaZulu-Natal justice, crime prevention and security cluster, Nqakula said the reservists would be trained and paid.
"Each one of us must see him or herself as a building block of a country that is free from violent crime, gangsterism and drug trafficking and abuse. Let's all become law officers and make this country one we are all proud of," he said.
Nqakula said he was positive about the future.
"When I look at the future, I am positive it will be better than the current phase because of the gradually growing relationship between the police and society.
"People who work side by side with officers have the least crime," he said.
Sbu Ndebele, the provincial premier, said a volunteer force was already being formed in the province and 1000 youths were undergoing training.
"We expect them to help police in fighting crime.
"We want to ensure that people work in their own areas. We believe they know and understand the hot-spots of their respective areas and it would be easy for them to operate there," Ndebele said.