PRETORIA-- The murder of police officers should be regarded as a treasonous act as it is an attack on the state, said South African Police Minister Bheki Cele here Sunday when addressing the South African Police Service (SAPS) National Commemoration Day of the 28 police officers and one reservist who died in the line of duty during the 2017/18 financial year.
The event, which was held at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, was attended by Cele, his deputy minister, Bongani Mkongi, the Chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee on Police, Francois Buekman, the top SAPS leaders and the families of the slain officers.
He said the government must facilitate policy or law reform to define the murder of officers as a crime against the State and equal to treason, adding that an attack on police should be regarded as a double-crime.
He said the manner in which police officers were killed undermined the integrity of the State. It will make it impossible for those who murder police to see the sun again for the rest of their lives, Cele said at the memorial service.
He said the safety and security of citizens, the prevention and combating of crime, required partnership between the police, communities and relevant stakeholders. As the cornerstone of this partnership, it would be prudent to have police officers who are highly motivated, competent and dedicated to their task to fight crime.
In intensifying the battle against the scourge, the Minister said he and the SAPS leadership had agreed to change the training curriculum of police cadets. Training will be intensified to the level of Tactical Response Teams and include a street-wise course for members to adapt to arising situations and respond adequately, he said.
When a criminal thinks of taking on police, Cele said, they must know that when that engagement ends, it won't be the police officer down.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK