Report presented to the Police Portfolio Committee meeting in Parliament today, revealed that SAPS loses about 6000 members every year.
So far in the present financial year, SAPS has shed 1000 members.
The report indicated that dismissals, retrenchments, resignations and retirements accounted for the lose. And, that most of the vacancies are not being filled.
“The effect of this is that police officers, and especially detectives, already constrained by under-capacity, will be further overburdened, which restricts their ability to fight crime,” wailed the Democratic Alliance party.
DA referred to a previous report which disclosed that almost half as many new police officers came out of SAPS training academies into active service in the previous financial year compared to four years ago.
With that, the party lamented that the issue is a worrying trend.
“(It) means the South African Police Service, already suffering from personnel shortages at station-level across much of the country, is shrinking and will have less capacity to prevent, combat and investigate crime in the future.
The numbers showed that the last three financial years of SAPS Academy graduate numbers represent a more than 50% aggregate drop in trained officer output compared to the two financial years before that. The culmination of all this will be an ever shrinking SAPS.”
More-so, the opposition party indicated that ideally, SAPS ought to be growing to 250 000 operational officers. It specified that more resources should be allocated and better managed for fighting crime in South Africa.
According to the party, “the safety of all South Africans should be government’s main priority.” It asserted that it is critical that key positions in the SAPS are filled.
Thereafter, it added that stations should be adequately resourced and all personnel, well-trained and fully equipped.