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Ekurhuleni metro police department workers have criminal records, awaiting trial

Ekurhuleni metro police department
Ekurhuleni metro police department
Image: EMPD/File Photo

At least 250 workers within the Ekurhuleni metro police department (EMPD) have criminal records while others are still going to courts for crimes they allegedly committed. 

Responding to questions posed by the DA's spokesperson for community safety in Ekurhuleni, Jaco Terblanche, at the legislature this month, MMC for community safety, Letlhogonolo Moseki, said 3,449 fingerprints from EPMD employees were taken during the last audit of 2022 and handed over to the provincial police commissioner’s office for processing. Moseki said 3,199 fingerprints came back with no criminal findings and that the remaining 250 were linked to criminal activities. Of these 250,167 employees had criminal records and 83 were awaiting trial for various offences. 

According to requirements for appointment as a member of a municipal police service, the applicant should not have previous criminal convictions (excluding previous convictions relating to political activities in the previous dispensation), wrote Moseke.

He said National Road Traffic Act also restrict the appointment and registration of an officer as a traffic officer or a traffic warden with a criminal record and this rule also applies to clerks and cashiers.

"Therefore, no EMPD employee may have a criminal record, unless the employee was waived or their record expunged," said Moseke in his response, adding that no employee has been dismissed because of their criminal records.

Terblanche said it was appalling that the city was hiring convicts and not taking accountability for it. 

"The South African Police Act of 1995 and the Criminals Procedures Act of 1997 emphatically state that no municipal police officer is allowed to have a criminal record. Yet, in Ekurhuleni, hundreds of the officers that are supposed to protect Ekurhuleni residents do. How can Ekurhuleni residents trust metro police who themselves have criminal records? The DA believes that a caring government would ensure that police officers are compliant with all relevant Acts," said Terblanche. 

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