In a bid to relieve motorists and pedestrians of traffic congestion caused by load shedding and vandalism of traffic lights, the Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD) has appointed and trained 200 pointsmen and women to manage these intersections across the city’s seven regions.
On Thursday, Public Safety MMC Dr Mgcini Tshwaku unveiled 200 JMPD points duty officials who resumed their duties as of Monday.
It is reported that they will be deployed at seven of the city’s busiest intersections affected by load shedding and destruction of traffic lights.
“These pointsmen and women are going to be deployed in all the seven regions of the City of Johannesburg. In each region, they have a list of the areas which are problematic where there are vagrants who are controlling the traffic. Also, they are going to be using the load-shedding schedule,” Tshwaku said.
According to the MMC, more than 100 000 applications came through from people who were looking for employment opportunities which the city said it could not meet due to budgetary constraints.
“The deployment of traffic points officials is a proactive measure aimed at reducing traffic disruptions and enhancing the travel experience for residents and visitors. We received more than 100 000 applications,” said Tshwaku.
“We recognise the public’s concerns about untrained individuals managing traffic. Under the JMPD’s guidance, we assure you there will be strict oversight and accountability for our points officials’ work. Our focus is to ensure traffic control in the city is in the hands of trained, authorised professionals from this point forward," he said.
Tshwaku has pleaded with the new recruits to conduct themselves professionally as they embark on their new journey.
“Our focus is to ensure that traffic control in the city is in the hands of trained, authorised professionals from this point forward,” he added, underscoring the department’s commitment to ethical and responsible traffic management.
When it comes to the selection process, Tshwaku said only the best applicants were considered as the process was stringent.
“The recruitment process of the points officials was exceptionally stringent in ensuring transparency and integrity in the selection processes. Notably, among those selected were individuals who had previously taken the initiative to manage traffic at various intersections, albeit without official training. Comprehensive criminal background and fit-for-purpose screenings were thoroughly conducted.”