Confusion reigns in metro police leadership

Though I sit on Johannesburg City Council's safety portfolio committee, the comments of Johannesburg metro police department (JMPD) spokesman Wayne Minnaar, on the problems with the e-Natis system and the training of metro police officers, confuse me.

Though I sit on Johannesburg City Council's safety portfolio committee, the comments of Johannesburg metro police department (JMPD) spokesman Wayne Minnaar, on the problems with the e-Natis system and the training of metro police officers, confuse me.

I believed that the JMPD was training 500 people a year, and Mayor Amos Masondo believes the same.

But Minnaar said we still have to upgrade facilities to train 500 people "every six months".

He also said the JMPD had 1800 officers, but the mayor said the city had close to 3000. Last week, the JMPD boobed again, when they said their licensing offices were open when they were not.

Masondo promised in 2001 that there would be stronger emphasis on by-law enforcement and traffic policing - that has not happened.

The JMPD is tasked with three main responsibilities: policing traffic, enforcing by-laws and preventing crime. If the department is not doing any of the three, then it is failing in its mandate.

Between the mayor and two senior officials, the chief of police and the department's spokesman, there is confusion regarding the state of the metro police. Whereas one believes that the city has a world-class police unit, the other thinks they are working towards that. And the other does not know.

Darren Bergman, DA safety spokesman in Johannesburg

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