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Welcoming speaker’s notes: General Sitole Passing-Out Parade Tshwane Academy
2018/12/21

Pretoria, 21 December 2018

Programme Director
Minister of Police, Mr Cele
Judge Deputy President, Mr Ledwaba
Deputy National Commissioners
Provincial, Divisional and Regional Commissioners  
The SAPS’s senior management
Senior officers
SAPS’s members and personnel
All Stakeholders
Labour Unions
Members on parade
Family and friends
Distinguished guests
Members of the media

Ladies and gentlemen, it is with great pride that I warmly welcome every one present here at the passing-out parade of the men and women who successfully completed their Basic Police Development Learning Programme. Passing-out parades are always a highlight on the SAPS’ calendar of events, as we welcome more members to our existing capacity as a force multiplier in the fight against crime.

It is indeed an honour to be in a position to say how much I admire all of you for your dedication to successfully pass this programme. Attaining the high standards demanded by this programme, is indeed a great achievement. Ahead of you lie years of serving and protecting the people of our great country, which I am confident that you will perform with selfless devotion as our Constitutional mandate expects of you.

Allow me to warmly welcome the Minster of Police, Mr Cele and the Judge Deputy President, Mr Ledwaba in our midst. Your presence is sincerely appreciated at this significant occasion and bears testimony of your personal interest and support of all our SAPS members. Minister, your sterling leadership and unwavering support enable and motivate us to face and overcome our challenges with confidence and vigour as an organisation.

A special welcome to all members on parade. It is humbling to see so many vibrant and energetic new additions to our organisation who seem eager to go out there and apply what they have learnt and most importantly, to fight crime, which is in line with the  National Development Plan Vision 2030, Chapter 12 which states that safety is a core human right.

We are exceptionally grateful to our Heavenly Father who has blessed us abundantly in being in a position to be here on this momentous occasion and for guiding and protecting you during your training. We are thankful to receive and welcome a total of 3701 new constables today at the Tshwane, Bhisho and Oudtshoorn Training Academies into our organisation and know that you will make an immense difference in the fight against crime.

Members on parade, I hope that after all these months of training, you realise that the SAPS and the nation depend on you to serve and protect with dignity, dedication and professionalism. You have a mammoth responsibility to fulfil these expectations, and you must remember that you must always lead by example and uphold the SAPS’ Code of Conduct in pursuance of a crime-free and peaceful society.

It is an honour to share this important day with you and on behalf of the entire SAPS, I warmly welcome you to our family of blue.

The SAPS’s annual Safer Festive Season Operation’s crime-fighting campaign under the theme ‘Quiet Storm’, has been launched at the beginning of November 2018 and is aimed at making South Africa a safe place before, during and after the festive season. Moving forward, we will weekly observe #SafetyFriday which will take place in the form of focussed operations countrywide.

You will join the other SAPS’s members to ensure that South Africa enjoys a safe and peaceful festive season. Always remember to be vigilant and abide by the basic safety rules and regulations, as your safety is of the utmost importance. Thank you in advance for the selfless service you are going to render to the communities and for sacrificing family time to make South Africa safe.  We also wish to welcome and express our appreciation to your families and loved ones for supporting you and understanding that policing is a vocation like no other, as there are many challenges and dangers which you will have to face and successfully overcome every day.

Ladies and gentlemen, the people of South Africa are in dire need of your services and it is important that when you are out there fighting crime, that you do so within the confines of the laws of our country.

It is important that all the members of the SAPS work together as a team and that we work toward achieving one common goal – ‘On a journey to a safer South Africa’. This goal is underpinned in the Turnaround Vision of the SAPS, which was announced at the time of my appointment as the National Commissioner of the SAPS in November 2017. I deem it important to share it with our new recruits so that we can work as a team. The vision is ‘Creating a safe and secure country and a crime-free environment conducive to socio-economic stability, in support of a better life for all’.

Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to briefly touch on four important aspects of the vision.

The first aspect is ‘Enforcing the authority of the State’ and will address the murder of police officers, the normalisation strategy and stabilisation approach in criminal ‘no-go’ areas.

Part of the ‘quick win approach’ will be the revival of the Organised Crime Threat Assessment, which will be dealing with and strengthening the unconventional, as well as the conventional approaches to policing. A modus operandi analysis will be done in the organisation to destroy the modus operandi of criminals, to deter them.

The vision also focuses on preventing criminals from accessing their resources. By this we mean that we will be taking young people out of reach of the criminals, as it has been found that in 80% of criminal operations, young people are used as runners, in hijackings and or are the victims. To achieve this, we will be formulising the Youth Crime Strategy which seeks to empower and support young people in order for them to become self-sufficient and involved in crime-fighting initiatives.

The fourth approach is the distribution of resources to police station level. This will include personnel and other resources to increase capacity and experience to face the criminals, where crime is taking place at the local level.

Young recruits, it is important that we leave here understanding the shared vision of the SAPS. You must understand that you can no longer act independently and are now part of a huge organisation with nearly 200 000 employees who need to work together as a collective, to achieve the strategic objectives of the SAPS.

Members on parade, you will need to continuously learn and apply what you have been taught, to improve your policing skills, as we need members who can think out of the box and who can act proactively. Criminals are continuously changing and improving their modus operandi, and you always need to be a step ahead of them. And of course you must always have the interests of the people you serve and protect, at heart.

Use the powers vested in you with great care and responsibility, and always be ethical and professional in the execution of your duties. Treat all people with the utmost respect and humility regardless of their race, gender or age, and do not ever fall into any trap of criminality or corruption. The management of the SAPS feels very strongly about corruption and criminality in its ranks, and will not tolerate it.  We will deal decisively with those who tarnish the image of our noble organisation.

Ladies and gentlemen, before I conclude allow me to make an important announcement. Lieutenant General Kwena, the Acting Divisional Commissioner: Human Resource Development, I wish to thank you on behalf of the management of the SAPS for leading the HRD Division in the absence of Lieutenant General Mkhwanazi who was appointed as the Acting Provincial Commissioner of KwaZulu-Natal with commitment and dedication. Your years of experience in the organisation, the Human Resource Development environment and in a senior management position have served you well in steering this important Division with innovation, integrity and honesty. We are truly thank full for all your efforts and initiatives

I now call upon Lieutenant General (Dr) Zulu and Lieutenant General Mkhwanazi to approach the podium.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is my honour to now announce that Lieutenant General (Dr) Zulu has been appointed as the new Divisional Commissioner for the Division: Human Resource Development. She has previously served as the Divisional Commissioner: Research and was a key figure in the development of the SAPS Research Agenda which is crucial for the analysis and implementation of the National Development Plan Vision 2030. Lieutenant General (Dr)  Zulu has also led the team in producing the SAPS’s Women’s Empowerment Agenda 2019 – 2024 which was officially launched in the Eastern Cape on 30 August 2018 – an historical day, not only for women in the SAPS, but for the entire organisation in advancing the agenda of women in law enforcement.

She has many years of vast management experience in various Divisions and specifically the Division Human Resource Development. On behalf of the management of the SAPS, I congratulate and wish her well with her new appointment and we vow to support and assist her in all her efforts. I urge all other senior managers, SAPS members and personnel to do the same. I now request Lieutenant General Mkhwanazi, the former Divisional Commissioner of the Division to officially hand over the change of command to her.

Ladies and gentlemen, in conclusion, welcome once again to all present and may you enjoy this memorable occasion with us.

I now invite the Minister of Police, Mr Cele to inspect the Parade.

Thank you.

Enquiries: Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo 082 567 4153