'Stressed police resort to suicide'

Masoka Dube

Masoka Dube

Police are working under traumatic and difficult conditions that cause them to commit suicide or kill their spouses and children, says a top Mpumalanga officer.

Skukuza police station commissioner Captain Jaine Khoza told Sowetan: "Police are working under traumatic situations and they do not get enough time off to go for proper counselling.

"So when they experience personal problems they find it difficult to deal with them."

Khoza was speaking after 35-year-old Inspector Kobus Nel took his life by shooting himself dead last week.

Khoza said when police officers encountered problems at home their lives became so painful that they did not know how to cope with the situation.

"The government should do something about the situation before we lose more colleagues to suicide," Khoza said.

Khoza said Nel had not complained about anything and appeared happy all the time.

Nel's wife told police she heard a gunshot in one of the rooms and on investigating found him lying in a pool of blood.

He had shot himself in the head.

Nel did not leave a suicide note.

The White River police have opened an inquest docket.