City partners with SAPS for improved training

28 Jul 2022 in Where We Govern

The City of Cape Town’s Tactical Response Unit (TRU), within the Safety and Security Directorate, responds to incidents of civil unrest. The team, along with 20 Law Enforcement Advancement Plan (LEAP) officers, recently completed additional training presented by the South African Police Service and showed off their newly acquired skills.

‘The TRU is on the front line during unrest and public violence. They are often on the scene alongside other role players, but there are times when they are not only first on site but also the only responders.

‘They have just completed a gruelling crowd management course, which is the same training public order policing officers within the South African Police Service undergo. This will ensure stronger security, improved safety for all on scene and possibly save lives during incidents,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, Alderman JP Smith.

In an additional workshop provided by SAPS, LEAP officers mastered the skills to better secure crime scenes they attend.

‘The aim of the workshop is to improve the quality of our case files when LEAP officers make arrests and to ensure better convictions in court. There have been cases of our officers arresting the same offenders, some while they’re out on bail for similar crimes. Equipped with these additional skills, these members will be able to preserve valuable evidence that may prove valuable in assisting our SAPS members in securing the required conviction.

‘There is a blatant disregard for the law and criminals are aware of the serious challenges in the criminal justice system. Our officers are often the first to arrive on scene and added to the training provided by SAPS on taking statements, we are looking to improve the quality of our case dockets that will hopefully reduce the effort needed by the investigating officer and result in those accused moving faster through the prosecution process. In this way, we should be able to put criminals behind bars faster and prevent them from committing further destruction and despair on our society,’ added Alderman Smith.

The first training intervention saw the Metro Police TRU division undergo a workshop on First Responder training for Crowd Management, a workshop presented by SAPS Western Cape Human Resource Training, which covered various modules relating to various aspects of legislation, as well as techniques and tactical procedures that will now allow the members to better support the SAPS Public Order Policing units at such scenes.

In return, the City will utilise its accredited Metro Police Training Academy as well as its accredited Fire Training Academy to provide SAPS members with training related to firefighting, high-angle rescue, first aid, health and safety training, as well as frontline communications.

‘This partnership agreement between the City of Cape Town and our South African Police Service of the Western Cape is a watershed moment and a monumental step forward for improving the service delivery within our municipality, both for our local SAPS members and for the Safety and Security directorate. I am extremely grateful for our local SAPS senior management team for accepting our offer and uniting with us in our common goal to protect and serve. This is a partnership we will cherish and will continue to build and improve as we continue forward,’ said Alderman Smith.

Western Cape Provincial Minister of Infrastructure, Minister Tertuis Simmers, said: ‘This initiative is yet another example of the possibilities that can be achieved when the collaboration of Police Services and Law Enforcement agencies are formulated within local and provincial spheres such as with the Safer Cities initiative. Where the deployment of resources is aligned with the scientific data, that will not only enable us to respond but essentially prevent crimes from happening. As the Minister of Infrastructure, I commend this initiative, with an adequately trained and bolstered TRU we will better secure and prevent costly damages to our property, that result from illegal invasions. In this current financial year 2022/23, illegal invasions have cost the taxpayers R39,9 million.’