Newly-appointed national police commissioner Mangwashi Victoria Phiyega. Photo: Elmond Jiyane/ GCIS

Newly appointed national police commissioner General Mangwashi Phiyega on Thursday said she acknowledged the overwhelming task she faced.

“Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much; this is however, a responsibility we should take with both hands, soldiering on and in delivering on the mandate South Africans have entrusted upon us,” Phiyega told reporters in Pretoria.

“In order to succeed, I acknowledge that it is necessary to consult, listen and learn.”

This would be enhanced by leading and acting decisively, she said.

Phiyega said she was humbled that in the country's 99 years of policing history she was the first female national police commissioner.

The commissioner said she would meet with police senior management on Friday and so would not give details on strategies going forward.

Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa was introducing Phiyega to the media.

Mthethwa urged everyone to give Phiyega space to start doing her work before she outlines her vision.

“She needs to understand the environment first,” he said.

Phiyega would be going to her new office for the first time after the media introduction.

President Jacob Zuma announced Phiyega's appointment on Tuesday when he axed former commissioner Bheki Cele. – Sapa