On Thursday, 19 July, the Mayoral Committee of the City of Johannesburg passed a resolution to boost the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) with a further 180 traffic wardens.
The City is growing at a substantial rate of about 3 000 new residents per month, as more and more people from around the world choose to make Johannesburg their home, and this rapid growth in population has necessitated that the City increase and improve capacity in all areas in order to deliver services efficiently and effectively.
This is part of “Diphetogo”, the City’s multi-party government’s initiative to improve the lives of our people by allocating a bigger share of funds only to priority projects that touch the lives of residents in a meaningful way.
Public safety is essential in maintaining stable economic growth and attracting investment to the City, which is why JMPD has been spearheading the restoration of law and order across the City.
Since the launch of Operation Buya Mthetho, a multi-disciplinary operation aimed at restoring law and order, more than 500 un-roadworthy and illegal mini bus taxis have been impounded by JMPD.
The metro police’s K9 Narcotics and Tactical Unit has effected 1 193 arrests, recovering 123 illegal firearms, 136 kilograms of drugs and over 1000 hijacked vehicles.
Noting that safety challenges in the City remain a mammoth task, it is important to ensure that there are adequate policing resources to serve its residents.
To this end, the City will be recruiting about 180 traffic wardens from the former Extended Public Works Program employees who were previously trained to perform traffic pointsman duties.
The Department of Public Safety identified the need to capacitate traffic wardens with additional powers in order to allow them to perform at optimum level.
JMPD Chief of Police David Tembe has engaged with the Gauteng Provincial Government and Transport MEC Dr. Ismail Vadi has agreed to this initiative to further endow JMPD traffic wardens with the following powers:
In terms of the National Road Traffic Act of 1996, a traffic warden may, in addition to their usual traffic management functions;
- When in uniform, require a driver of any vehicle to stop such vehicle;
- Regulate and control traffic upon any public road and give such directions as may be necessary;
- Require any person to give his/ her name, address, and other particulars or any process which are required for identification purposes if the traffic warden suspects the person having committed an offence;
- In respect of any motor vehicle, demand the owner, operator or driver to produce any documents as may be prescribed in terms of the Act.
The recruitment process will commence shortly and qualifying beneficiaries in terms of this first Traffic Warden Recruitment Program will be contacted to present themselves for the relevant processes. Once the recruitment program is completed, the City will see 180 traffic wardens servicing the residents of Johannesburg.
In closing, I wish to extend my sincere gratitude to MEC Vadi for accepting our application and extending the above powers to the City of Johannesburg as this allows us to bring back the Rule of Law to the City.
MEC Vadi’s assistance is a perfect example of the kind of intergovernmental relations that we wish to have.