21 September 2015
JOINT STATEMENT BY THE SOCIAL JUSTICE COALITION AND NDIFUNA UKWAZI
WE DEMAND CONCRETE COMMITMENTS & DECISIVE LEADERSHIP AFTER A YEAR OF DELAYS!
Minister Nhleko’s announcements
The Social Justice Coalition (SJC) and Ndifuna Ukwazi (NU) welcome the outcome of a meeting held between the Minister of Police Nathi Nhleko and the Khayelitsha Development Forum (KDF) in Khayelitsha on 12 September 2015 (http://ewn.co.za/2015/09/13/Nhleko-commits-to-implementation-of-Khayelitsha-inquiry ). The media has reported that during the meeting the Minister communicated his commitment to the implementation of the recommendations put forward by the Khayelitsha Commission of Inquiry into Policing in August 2014.
A letter written to the Minister on Wednesday, 16 September 2015, on behalf of the SJC, NU and Equal Education similarly welcomed a previous announcement by the Minister, also reported in the media, of the development of a national plan to change the way human, physical and financial resources are allocated within the South African Police Service (SAPS). In addition the letter welcomed the establishment of the task team, comprising of both SAPS and Western Cape Government representatives, tasked to constructively engage with the Commission’s recommendations.
Our organisations are hopeful that the Minister’s recent announcements will set a precedent for the work of the task team and inform its terms of reference.
It has been a year since the Commission ended, and although there have now been favourable announcements regarding the Commission’s findings and recommendations, substantive action and decisive leadership has been wanting. An increasing number of communities have been venting their frustrations around police resourcing and have resorted to vigilante attacks.
Given the Minister’s public commitment to the implementation of the Commission’s recommendations, we expect a positive and timely written response to the memorandum handed to the Minister’s office on 25 August 2015 during a protest at Parliament. We expect the response to include clear plans and timeframes. The deadline for the response is 25 September 2015.
In addition our letter to the Minister made a call for a clear and public statement on the mandate of the task team, mentioned above, along with a request that the minutes and outcomes of the task team meetings be made public.
Our organisations stand at the ready to work with SAPS nationally and to further strengthen our relationships with SAPS locally to give substance to the recommendations. However should the Minister fail to meet these demands or engage substantively with our organisations we will have no other option but to seek relief from the Courts.
For comment please contact:
Chumile Sali (SJC)
071 609 3236
Craig Oosthuizen (NU)
071 611 7237