Members of the Parliament’s Police Portfolio Committee have expressed their unhappiness over the performance of the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID). The entity presented its annual report for 2021/22 to Parliament earlier on Friday.
The IPID is responsible for investigating the public’s complaints about police officers. The entity says out of more than 4 000 investigations conducted, it can report 230 department convictions and 20 criminal convictions.
223 deaths in police custody were reported in the 2021/22 financial year. 410 deaths as a result of police action. 99 rape cases by a police officer were recorded. 192 torture cases were also reported, and nearly 3 500 cases of assault were recorded.
The shocking figures emerged during the IPID briefing.
The police watchdog body says it has a backlog of more than 40 000 cases.
The low conviction rate is also of concern.
The FF Plus MP Pieter Groenewald says the low conviction rate is unacceptable after 99 cases of allegations of rape against police officers were investigated.
“Decision-ready cases per classification, I take rape by a police officer, criminal convictions, one. only one. IPID is failing the people of SA if you look at the statistics,” says Groenewald.
The Chairperson of Parliament’s Police Portfolio Committee, Tina Joemat-Pettersson, says it is unacceptable that police who are found guilty of rape, are not brought to book.
According to the annual report of the Independent Police Investigative Directorate, 99 rape cases against police officers were investigated but only one officer was convicted. The police watchdog body briefed Parliament on its 2021/22 report.
Joemat-Pettersson says those who must protect women and children from gender-based violence can’t get away with committing crimes.
“Those who are fighting GBV are guilty of committing GBV themselves. If we can’t monitor our own, our own getting away with this. How to expect GBV to be addressed by our own saps and overseen by IPID when clear lapses of commitment.”
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