File photo: African News Agency (ANA)
DURBAN - A police official has been suspended for allegedly failing to do her duties after refusing to help a complainant because she was on a “go-slow”.

This comes after The Mercury reported on Monday that memoranda and voice messages were being circulated via social media among officers, who were upset that members of the Tactical Response Teams were being promoted while many officers at station level were overlooked for promotions.

Disgruntled officers said they would be embarking on a go-slow due to a continuing dispute within the SAPS regarding the “unfair” promotions.

The complainant said she had gone to the police station to report a case of theft.

“There were female constables at the counter, but they did not come to help us. I called the Warrant Officer on duty and asked him to help us, but he told us that they (the constables) would help us and that we must wait,” the complainant said.

She said that a constable then informed her that they were on a go-slow.

“She told me that the go-slow had been published in the media and that we should know about it. I told her that I was not aware, but that we needed to be served as a community. I told her that if they had issues, these needed to be addressed with their commander,” the complainant said.

The police officer allegedly told the woman that she should report the theft case to National Police Minister, Bheki Cele. “We were shocked at the manner in which the young constable addressed us. She then told us to go to another police station,” the complainant said.

A similar scenario played out for two members of the media who were mugged while taking photographs in Durban on Monday afternoon.

Doctor Ngcobo and Sbusiso Ndlovu were standing on the M4 highway when a group of men from the nearby railway lines robbed them of a camera.

Ngcobo said they were sent from station to station with officers saying that the mugging had not taken place in their station’s jurisdiction.

A resident whose family had been attacked in Maydon Road said her husband had also been sent “from pillar to post” to open a case.

Speaking to The Mercury on condition of anonymity, a police officer said it was disheartening to see younger officers being considered for posts above those who had more than 10years’ service.

“We work so hard and often have to move from station to station just to be acknowledged for our efforts. I am sitting here with more than a decade of unbroken service, but I am hearing of constables being pushed up the ranks,” he said.

The officer, who is a detective, said he knew of officers in elite policing units who were moved up the ranks in a matter of months.

National police spokesperson Colonel Athlenda Mathe said a briefing would be held tomorrow.

“We have been informed that Minister Cele will brief the communications teams and a press briefing will be held,” she said.