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Saturday, August 20, 2022

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Editor’s Note: New police recruits need new leader

Published Jun 4, 2022


Does anyone doubt it’s high time for Bheki “Bluster” Cele to be shown the door?

Yesterday’s release of crime statistics for January to March this year show him to be an abject failure in the role of Police Minister.

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Increases of more than 22% in murders and nearly 14% in rapes over the same period last year would, in the normal course of events, result in Cele’s dismissal, if he does not voluntarily resign in shame over the policing shambles he has presided over.

But this is South Africa, so Cele could expect a pat on the back instead, and perhaps we might get a commission of inquiry into the causes of crime.

I appreciate that the police cannot be everywhere all the time; they cannot, for example, police what happens behind closed doors in private homes.

But it also appears to be true that they are nowhere to be seen when they are most desperately needed.

They were certainly not seen when nearly 400 people were killed and R50 billion in damage was caused during last July’s looting.

Cele, tough of talk and weak of action and results, says 10 000 new officers are in training, and 5 000 more are to be hired.

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I venture that these new recruits should also get a new leader, lest they follow Cele’s all-talk-and-no-action example.

The Independent on Saturday