POTCHEFSTROOM – Section 28 of the Bill of Rights (Chapter 2) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996, (Act no 108 of 1996), advocated the importance of the Rights of Children and gives effect to the implementation of the Children’s Act, 2005 (Act no 38 of 2008) and the Child Justice Act, 2008 (Act no 75 of 2008) to protect and advance the best interest of the child.
The involvement of young people in criminal activities in South Africa, either as victims or perpetrators, has been a cause of great concern. As a result the Ministry of Police declared crimes against women and children a priority. The Junior Commissioner Project emerged from the Junior Leadership Concept. It provides an opportunity to invest in young people and it is an empowerment tool, which primarily intends to inculcate leadership, mentorship, moral and ethical values in the youth. It is also aimed at building resistance and resilience among young people to crime and violence effecting them in their communities.
The Objectives of the Junior Commissioner Project are:
- Promoting and developing leadership development and character building;
- Providing a youth stakeholder engagement platform;
- Creating an opportunity for early and long-term mentorship;
- Promoting and encouraging diversity among learners;
- Recognising young people as key role players in school safety.
On Friday, 12 November 2021, the South African Police Service in the North West in cooperation with the Department of Education held a debate competition in Potchefstroom at the 4 Artillery Regiment Military Base camp, where nine nominees, representing all four District Municipalities, participated. The nine learners presented their schools’ bullying speeches in front of a panel of adjudicators, in the presence of their parents. Ultimately the following four learners were announced and appointed as follows:
1. Junior Deputy Provincial Commissioner: Support Services, Masego Ntsie from Phokeng;
2. Junior Deputy Provincial Commissioner: Crime Detection: Ntebogang Sedumecwe from Morokweng;
3. Junior Deputy Provincial Commissioner: Policing: Kagiso Lebakeng from Zeerust;
4. Junior Provincial Commissioner: Kamogelo Moropa from Mooinooi (overall winner).
The Deputy Provincial Commissioner: Policing, Major General Patrick Asaneng, said during the keynote address he has witnessed numerous times in shopping malls, parents scarring their children when a police officer appears. He said: “The police must protect children and not be used as scare crows.” He also said there is a general challenge of leadership and morality in South Africa, and appealed to the youth to be game changers. He said the youth should have respect, love and humanity. He further said: “Respect is not demanded, but earned. See the love of God.” He concluded by motivating the youth to be pioneers, especially during this trying Covid-19 times and said the Junior Commissioner Competition should be a learning curve to all.
The Deputy Provincial Commissioner: Crime Detection, Major General Dintletse Molefe said during the handing over that she is humbled of what she saw during the competition. She said: “We saw today our future President and future Scientists.” She motivated the learners by saying they must continue to be a voice for change and continue to be the voice of reason.
The newly appointed Junior Provincial Commissioner, 15-year-old Kamogelo Moropa from Bapong Village, close to Mooinooi, said in her address said she is grateful for the position she was given and said the following to the community: “Get out of the box you are hiding in, be strong and speak out against crime, especially Gender Based Violence.”
Source: South African Police Service