Police top brass on fact-finding mission decry state of some police stations in KZN

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Police Minister Bheki Cele says the current state of some police stations in the country needs urgent attention. Cele says poor infrastructure, lack of resources and inadequate police personnel are major problems facing the police force.

He was speaking on Thursday after a two-day oversight visit to Durban by the Ministerial Committee monitoring both the functionality and resources at police stations.

Some of the province’s police stations that reported a high number of serious crimes received an unannounced visit. As the Minister arrived, police had just discovered drugs such as cocaine and dagga to the street value of almost R100 000 and one suspect was arrested.

Minister Bheki Cele says some of these crimes could be easily addressed with proper resources. “Detectives are very low, even the visible police cars. One is not very happy. Several of them are in the garage and we would have loved that those numbers of cars are on the road rather than the garage.”

Cele’s visit is aimed at identifying and resolving problems confronting the police. But he did not confirm when these challenges would be resolved.

On another pressing matter, the Minister conceded that police will not meet the deadline of having gender-based violence desks at all police stations by the end of the month.

“I would have sat in the office and say all gender-based violence desks are there by the end of the month. I hope they are but by the look of things it seems they are not going to be all there,” Cele explains.

Meanwhile, Cele has condemned the actions of a community group Operation Dudula which is targeting undocumented foreign nationals.

The Minister emphasises, “They have no business to go to an individual’s household. Hence, the investigation is ongoing on what they did in Johannesburg. Even the police, by the way, to go to your house, need the warrant so it can’t be anybody knocking in my house and saying you have drugs here.”

Cele says such visits will be conducted in other provinces soon.