14 February 2018
SAMWU Troubled by Metro Police Killings
The South African Municipal Workers’ Union (SAMWU) is concerned by the recent spike in Metro Police killings in Gauteng. In the last two weeks, 5 Metro Police Officers were killed while on duty of which 3 belonged to the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD), 1 at the Tshwane Metropolitan Police Department (TMPD) and another at attached to the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Police Department (EMPD).
Today we received saddening news that JMPD Officer Ratshikhopha has unfortunately succumbed to the injuries he sustained when he was assisting a motorist who was being hijacked in Booysen. Officer Ratshikhopha was taken to hospital in a critical condition but unfortunately nothing could be done to save his life.
Officer Ratshikhopha’s tragic end of life while on duty follows that of two officers who also died while on duty as a result of an alleged drunk driver who drove into them while they were conducting a roadblock in the North of Johannesburg.
We have also learnt of another tragic event wherein criminals in Pretoria ended the life of a TMPD Officer during a robbery. Again this morning we learnt of yet another tragic event wherein an EMPD Officer was shot in killed in Springs in the East Rand. Two Officers entered a filling station and found a robbery in progress. Without any warning, the criminals shot at the Officers leaving one dead and stealing his firearm.
In the last 6 months, 11 Metro Police Officers have died in the line of duty in Gauteng Province alone with 5 occurring in the last 14 days. We believe that the killings have now reached proportions which warrant necessary action to ensure the safety of law enforcement officers. The perpetrators of these horrendous crimes live among us, we therefore call on community members with information to approach their nearest Police Station so justice can prevail for the families of our fallen.
Children have been orphaned, spouses widowed, bread winners have been taken away from families and Gauteng residents have been robbed of dedicated servants as a result of these barbaric attacks directed at Officers. We therefore call on the amendment of Section 49 of the Criminal Procedure Act which which puts certain restrictions and limitations on how law enforcement officers may use their firearms. In the meantime, we urge all law enforcement officers not to die with their firearms in their hands, this criminality should be met with appropriate reaction from Officers.
SAMWU once again expresses its heartfelt and sincere condolences to the families and colleagues of these Officers. We lower our banners in mourning, saluting and honoring these heroes who died in the line of duty, ensuring the safety and security of Gauteng Citizens. May their heroic spirits rest in peace. Robalang ka kgotso!
Issued by SAMWU Secretariat
(079 887 8389)
Deputy General Secretary
(082) 899 2169)
National Media Officer
(073 710 0356)