Barrel of gun puts bloody end to row

Tebogo Monama

Tebogo Monama

The death of two police commanders, with bullet wounds in their heads, has sent shock waves though the police community.

Commissioner Freddy Baloyi died on the floor of the Mhala police station in Thulamahashe, Mpumalanga, and Commander Alfred Dlamini died at the hospital.

"We have to give support to officers at the station," the Mpumalanga police commissioner's spokesman, Superintendent Sibongile Nkosi, told Sowetan.

"No-one knows what happened. We are really shocked, especially considering their length of service."

Baloyi had 28 years of service while Dlamini worked for the police for 25 years.

Popcru national spokesman Benzi ka-Soko said: "We are very shocked and concerned about officers who unleash their anger on their families and colleagues. Problems cannot be solved through the barrel of the gun.

"There is a shortage of psychologists in the police so most officers do not go to debriefing sessions when they get back from scenes."

The SA Police Union said that they condemned "with the strongest possible terms the senseless killings".

Acting secretary Oscar Skommere said: "This event is unheard of in the police establishment, particularly that it involves senior officers. What went wrong in the corridors of the boardroom?

"We call upon the SAPS management to consider the effectiveness of the employee assistance programme within the SAPS.

"This is a serious challenge for the police. Usually it is junior officers who, when failing to resolve issues among themselves, would kill each other," he said.