Meeting SummaryFive organisations made presentations to the Committee. The Independent Complaints Directorate (ICD) had been able to establish four new offices and aimed to establish offices over the whole county. It also planned to restructure by converting some of the employees to investigators. The ICD received a total of 6 119 complaints during 2008/09. In general ICD experienced 5% increase in case intake. Members questioned why the targets had remained the same, whether they were achievable, why posts were not funded, whether recommendations were now being implemented by SAPS, the problems around hangings and suicides in cells, the call centres and costings, and how the allocation of R500 000 was to be spent, and the filling of the Acting posts.
The Secretariat for Safety and Security stated that the two-fold purpose of the Secretariat was to monitor, evaluate and report on the implementation of policing policies and Ministerial directives by the SAPS and secondly to provide strategic advice to the Minister on a range of safety and security issues. It discussed the programmes undertaken, the legislation considered and the moves to incorporate the Community Police Forums in municipalities. Committee Members inquired into the national and provincial structure of the Secretariat, the relocation of the Community Police Forums to municipalities and how these would be funded, the problem around reservists and their expectations, by whom the budget for the various activities had been approved, the releasing of crime statistics, an evaluation of the legislation on firearms and the gender composition of the Secretariat.
The State Information Technology agency stated that it had made substantial achievements, these including that it was the largest single network with 40000 workstations, the largest mainframe and had introduced new switching centres. It described in some detail the specific work being done with the SAPS. It was noted that the Agency and the SAPS were working together in the National Joint Operation Centre and Provincial Operation Centres towards the implementation for the Confederations Cup. The Committee asked questions regarding the provincial distribution of IT technologies as well as the technological advancement of rural police stations, and the firearm permits.
The presentations by the South African Police Union and Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union, due to the shortage of time, essentially consisted of comments upon the budget and pleas to the Committee to deal with what they regarded as pressing issues in the South African Police Service (SAPS) budget.
South African Police
Independent Complaints Directorate (ICD): briefing
Mr Elias Valoyi, Acting Executive Director, Independent Complaints Directorate, stated that the budget for the Independent Complaints Directorate (ICD) for the 2008/09 financial year was R98 million. The ICD was able to establish four new offices and aimed to establish offices over the whole county. Its priority for the 2008/09 financial year had also included the establishment of a call centre to enable people to make complaints on a 24-hour basis, but it had not received the necessary funding for these priorities. It also planned to restructure by converting some of the employees to investigators, in order to had more personnel in the field.
ICD’s priorities for the next financial year had not changed. The biggest challenge that the ICD would continue to face was the shortage of personnel. When the ICD was established a work study recommended that 505 posts be allocated to enable it to operate effectively. However, twelve years after establishment, only 287 of those posts had been funded.
Ms Noluthando Sihlezana, Programme Manager: Information Management, ICD, stated that she would overview Programme 3, and referred to the nature of pro-active oversight, which included conducting cell inspections at police stations, conducting service delivery audits at police stations and conducting research to identify systematic problems with a view to recommending and implementing practical solutions. She further stated that it was important that the Committee know what the ICD had done so far and referred to the complaints case intake. The ICD received a total of 6 119 complaints during 2008/09. In general ICD experienced 5% increase in the 2008/9 case intake compared to the previous financial year. Ms Sihlezana noted that these were not the final statistics and the research was ongoing. The ICD had classified complaints in four classes. She further gave a brief overview of the statistics gathered by the ICD. Two workshops were held for stakeholders and research findings were discussed.
Ms Elize Verster, Chief Financial Officer, ICD, referred to the challenges the ICD experienced and mentioned the relocation of offices as well as the indication from the National Treasury that salary increases of senior staff members (SMS) were to be met from the budgeted amounts. At the end of the financial year the ICD had overspend the budget by less than 1%. She referred to the three programmes of the ICD and noted that Programme 2 had the most important function, and had experienced over spending.
She then referred to the request for finances for the current financial year and mentioned the three funding proposals. Unfortunately due to the worldwide economic crunch the budget was cut down from R180 million to R140 million. She then stated that ICD had prepared its request to the National Treasury for the next financial year, and mentioned that it had cut down the original requests. R6 million was needed for restructuring the new investigating programme, and the opening of one satellite office per year would cost R2.7 million per year. The increase of marketing services and the upgrading of the database would cost R1 million per year; which would amount to an extra R24 million.
Mr Tommy Tshabalala, Chief Director: Investigations, ICD, gave an overview of the activities of Programme 2 and showed the flow of investigation to explain the turnaround time for the completion of investigations. He then referred to the performance targets of 2008/9 and mentioned that the targets were reviewed, but remained the same for the following financial year. He mentioned the workload and gave several statistics of cases received and completed. The ICD had made a total of 1 209 recommendations to the South African Police Service (SAPS) but still faced challenges with the implementation of these recommendations. He then indicated that the police had a presence of over 1 100 police stations but the ICD had only one office in each province, which created time constraints for traveling and affected the turnover time of investigations.
Mr G Schneemann (ANC) stated that he would like to get a better understanding of why only 287 of the 505 posts were funded. He asked what feedback National Treasury was giving to the ICD. He further stated that it was clear that the reason for the length of time for investigations was the insufficient budget. He was glad to see that ICD had cut back on the amount being requested from National Treasury. He asked if the targets could be reached.
Ms D Kohler-Barnard (DA) stated she was pleased with certain developments but asked how many recommendations to SAPS were actually implemented. She noted that in the past SAPS had treated ICD with a certain degree of contempt.
Mr Tshabalala, responding to the questions around the recommendations to the SAPS, stated that there had been slight improvements. He noted that the police tended to follow legislation because they were forced to do so. The recommendations would probably only be followed in full if there were to be legislated for.
Ms Kohler-Barnard agreed with Mr Schneemann that ICD did not have sufficient funds.
Ms Kohler-Barnard referred to the suicides through hanging in jail cells, and asked if the ICD had seen an improvement over the years.
Ms D Schafer (DA) asked why new offices were opened if the ICD did not have staff to man the offices. She also inquired how many staff members the ICD had in its offices. She stated that the ICD had achieved most of its targets but asked why these targets had remained the same.
Mr Valoyi replied that this was because of the decrease in budget, which had a significant effect on the ICD’s operations.
Mr M Mncwango (COPE) stated that the ICD faced various challenges but did have the commitment of the Minister to help it. He further asked about the publicity of the ICD and stated that he would have liked to see more focus on marketing in the presentation.
Ms D Nhlengethwa (ANC) referred to the hangings in holding cells, stating that these were often carried out with shoelaces or other items that were not supposed to be allowed in the cells. She asked what the ICD was doing about this problem, because it seemed to be negligence on the part of SAPS.
Mr Tshabalala stated that shoelaces and belts were prohibited in cells. In the case of such a hanging, the safety commander would be held responsible, and the ICD would make a recommendation against that member responsible.
Ms L Chikunga (ANC) referred to the challenges that the ICD had raised, and asked what was meant by the statement that “police were expected to notify the ICD timeously” – and what “timeously” was taken to mean. If the ICD was not notified in time, someone must be held accountable.
Mr Tshabalala stated that if a shooting took place the SAPS was supposed to notify the ICD immediately. If the call came late it would influence the investigation. In instances where the ICD was notified late, it could make recommendations for legal action.
Ms Chikunga referred to the budget and wanted to know how much was allocated for salaries.
Mr Schneemann referred to the call centre, and asked if the ICD had done a costing for a fully operational call centre, so that people could at least phone in. He further stated that the ICD could use this as a tool to approach National Treasury and ask for more funding for this specifically, to assist the ICD operate effectively. He further inquired if the ICD had considered partnerships with other organisations.
Ms Sihlezana stated that ICD had requested R4 million from National Treasury for this project but only R500 000 was granted. ICD needed a further R2 million before it could implement a call centre. It wanted the call centre to offer at least three languages, and for it to be open 24 hours a day.
Mr Mncwango asked what was being done with the allocation of R500 000 for the call centre.
Ms Verster answered that ICD was using the money for compensation of employees.
Mr Mncwango asked how it was possible to have employees if there was not a call centre.
Ms Verster replied that there was R500 000 to put to a call centre, but the first staff members could only be appointed in September.
Mr Mncwango stated that he was confused, and asked how ICD could pay salaries if there was no call centre.
Ms Verster replied that ICD had the money, but was not utilising it yet, because it was not able to pay a whole year’s salary to the staff members. The staff would be employed from 1 September; R500 000 was enough to cover salaries for the last seven months of the financial year.
Ms Chikunga enquired as to what the staff members would do if there was no call centre.
Ms Sihlezana replied that the employees would be trained to access the ICD’s database. For instance, if there was a complaint in
Mr Mncwango stated that the call centre was important to the ICD’s operation. The first engagement from the ICD to the Minister would be to make sure that the call centre was working. He suggested that ICD should partner with agencies against crime in order to establish the call centre.
Ms Kohler-Barnard asked how long the Acting Head of Division had been in that post, and if there had there been any signs that a full-time permanent leader might be appointed.
Mr Valoyi stated that the Acting Head of Division had been in such a post for five years. He added that an advertisement had been published this month and hopefully the post would be permanently filled.
The Chairperson asked, in view of the shortage of time, that the rest of the questions should be answered in writing and submitted before the end of the week.
Secretariat for Safety and Security (the Secretariat) Briefing
Mr Temba Mathe, National Secretary, Secretariat for Safety and Security, stated that the Secretariat did not have a budget, because it was part of the SAPS, and thus received its money from them. He then referred to programmes of the Secretariat, which he pointed out was a statutory body, with the two-fold purpose to monitor, evaluate and report on the implementation of policing policies and Ministerial directives by the SAPS, and secondly to provide strategic advice to the Minister on a range of safety and security issues. The programmes designed to deliver on this purpose were Administration, which involved the Office of the Secretary, Support Services, Monitoring and Evaluation, Legal services, Policy and Research and Communication.
During the strategic workshop the Secretariat had to look at the State of the Nation Address to inform it of priorities, and he mentioned a few points that had informed the decisions. He said that the Budget Speech of the Minister of Finance, as well as the Cluster’s Medium Term Strategic Framework (MTSF) priorities helped to inform the decisions.
Mr Mathe then discussed the strategic programmes for safety and security for the current financial year. He stated that the Office of the Secretary dealt with Ministerial imbizos and was important because that was the source of issues of service delivery from the community and their relationships with police. Their target was to hold five imbizos by March 2010. Social Mobilization was important to the Secretariat’s operation and dealt with identified social formations like anti-crime initiatives. Another important programme was the strengthening of community police forums (CPF). Currently the CPF, in terms of the SAPS Act, had the function of oversight in police stations, but should be moved to municipalities. Nine provincial workshops had been held with CPFs, station commissioners and provincial departments of safety to document CPF best practice.
Mr Amichand Soman, Director: Legal Services, Secretariat , stated that the current situation was that the support services was internally- based. But in terms of Secretariat function these services were moving towards supporting the Minister and the Ministry. He further mentioned other support roles like training of personnel. He then stated that one of the responsibilities of the Secretariat was to provide the Minister with legal advice.
He further stated that an ongoing move in this financial year was to amend the SAPS Act and to amend the Constitution. The second Bill that was in a development stage concerned the Private Security Industry Regulations. He said that civil claims should be reduced. The Legal Advisory Services provided advice for the SAPS and the broader safety and security environment, and that had an impact on the Minister.
Mr Mlungisi Menziwa, Head of Policy and Research, Secretariat talked about the Policy and Research programme, stating that its main strategic priority was to provide policing policy advice to the Minister He further stated that the main research priority was to provide strategic and operational research support to the Secretariat and the Minister.
Mr T Mathe then proceeded to discuss the budget of the Secretariat (see attached report for details).
Mr M George (COPE) stated that it seemed as if the Secretariat was taking on more work of the SAPS. . He further stated that most of the Bills were drafted by the SAPS, and not the Secretariat. He asked about the problem of its location, especially now that the Department was referred to as the Department of Police.
Mr V Magagula (ANC) said that he thought the Secretariat was doing wonderful work. He asked for the meaning of the acronym JCPF in the presentation.
Mr Meshack Mogatusi, Director: Monitoring and Reporting, Secretariat, stated that JCPF stood for Justice and Crime Prevention of South Africa.
Mr Magagula referred to the CPFs stationed at the municipality, and then stated that a budget for this was not discussed in the presentation. He believed that if placed in the municipality they would suffer more problems than before, and asked for comment.
Mr Mathe stated that the mandate of the CPF did not allow them to be controlled by the police station, because some of them had been abused by the police and were unable to do their work. The Secretariat therefore moved the CPFs away from police stations. A municipality in Klerksdorp indicated that it had five offices available for the CPFs. The only problem was money for stipends, which the municipalities could not provide. The Secretariat had then made a request to National Treasury but had also approached Vodacom to sponsor cell phones, in order for the CPF to communicate with the police at night. Vodacom had donated 1 000 cell phones.
Mr Magagula referred to the reservists and stated that most of the reservists were there because they wanted to become police, and had in fact complained that this was not happening. He also asked what was meant, in the budget, by “reviewing of the reservists”.
Mr Mathe referred to the reservists who marched to the Minister saying that they had been in the reservists for 15 years and were never made police officers. He said that the Secretariat then realised the need to strengthen the reservists’ quality, to avoid this anomaly. The Secretariat was looking into reservist policy.
Mr Schneemann said that the presentation talked about a new body and promoting their image, and stated that he was a bit confused. There was nothing in the presentation that told about the past financial year, and this made him wonder if this was the first time that the Secretariat had made presentations to the Portfolio Committee. He asked how the budget amounts were reached. The Secretariat had pointed out that no budget was being submitted because the Secretariat derived its budget from the SAPS, but invoices had to be presented and paid. He asked if the budget that was included under the SAPS budget was approved, and by whom.
Mr Mncwango referred to the mandate of the Secretariat and said that they should engage further with the Committee on this matter. He said that he would like to understand the provincial structure. He asked about the role of the Provincial Secretariat.
Mr M Mogatusi stated that the Secretariat had a forum where the provincial Secretariat met regularly to discuss issues of safety and security.
Ms Kohler-Barnard referred to the advice on the release of crime statistics. The Secretariat apparently assisted the Minister to determine the release of statistics, but the Minister said that statistics should be released only once every second year. She asked if that was because of the Secretariat’s advice. She referred to the restructuring around monitoring of the statistics, asked how this could be done without crime statistics and asked if the Secretariat had crime statistics that the rest of the country were not allowed to see.
Ms Kohler-Barnard asked what key role players the Secretariat spoke to about tackling crime through knowledge.
Ms Kohler-Barnard commented that the amount for evaluation of the Firearms Control Act was very small and stated that it did not seem that an evaluation was being done, because of all the firearm license refusals.
Ms Kohler-Barnard referred to the disintegration of the police legal services, and asked if the Secretariat was aware of it or would over see it, and, if so, what were they doing about it.
Ms Schafer stated that the mandate should be reviewed to see if it was compliant with legislation. She referred to the figures from the previous year and noted that only nine out of nineteen targets were met. She asked, in light of this, how the Secretariat could then ask for a budget increase. She also referred to the infrastructure and noted that the figure of 16 Directors and Assistant Directors was high for the amount of work being done, and asked what all these directors were doing to earn their large salaries. She also commented that the amount allocated for finalising the policies was R896 400 and R896 400 was allocated for complaints management, which was a huge task, and asked how those figures were reached.
Mr Mogatusi stated that the Secretariat’s previous accomplishments had not been presented, because of the time constraints, but that there was a full report on that matter. He referred to the structure of the Secretariat and stated that there were four Directors and four Deputy Directors. He referred to the complete management budget allocation and stated that some complaints were not relevant and were not dealt with.
Ms P Mocumi (ANC) stated that according to the programme on Monitoring and Evaluation, the main objective was to monitor and evaluate the implementation of policies by SAPS. She referred to the firearms control and asked how the Secretariat intended to monitor and evaluate a situation where a gun was used but no investigators went to the scene to collect evidence. She also asked how the Secretariat would ensure that there was detection and prevention of illegal firearms.
The Chairperson referred to the Administration programme, and asked the purpose of the imbizos, noting that R95 000 had been allocated. She asked why the target on the first programme was 90% and not 100%. She referred to the monitoring and evaluating of policies and asked which policies were referred to and what legislation the Secretariat was using to do the evaluation, in order to be accountable. She also referred to the Legal Advisory Services and asked if this would be pro-active or reactive in its approach. The programme for Communication had a target for implementing their marketing plan by the end of 2009, and she asked how far the Secretariat was with meeting this target.
The Chairperson asked how many of the Directors and Deputy Directors were women.
Mr Soman replied that the top management was currently all male. He stated that there was a policy regarding provincial Secretariats, to let them act independently in their composition and functions. The Heads of Secretariats Forum was created in order for provincial Secretariats to be able to interact. The functions of the provincial Secretariat were the same as National, but they also had constitutional responsibilities.
The Chairperson asked how many of the nine provincial Secretariats were women.
Mr Soman replied that two of the nine provincial Heads were female.
Mr Mncwango stated that the next time the Committee would not accept an all-male presentation.
Mr George stated that the Secretariat had made many changes in regard to the CPFs and asked if there had been amendments to the law to accommodate those changes.
The Chairperson stated that all further questions should be submitted in writing to the Secretariat because of time constraints.
State Information Technology Agency (SITA) Briefing
Ms Femke Pienaar, Chief of Business Operations, State Information Technology Agency, stated that SITA was established in 1999. The SAPS was currently their largest customer and created 22% of SITA’s revenue. The achievements to date included that SITA had the largest single network with 40 000 workstations and the largest mainframe with 5,271 MIPS. The business applications were integrated and interfaced with Integrated Justice System (IJS). E-Dockets were implemented to prevent dockets from being stolen. SITA had a leading financial management capability. It also integrated with crime analysis, and deployed standardised equipment in vehicles, helicopters and control centres.
Ms Pienaar noted that SITA needed to optimise its revenue intake because it was a non-profit organisation. It generated revenues through the pricing of the services. It planned to reduce the cost of ICT support, increase responsiveness, maximise process efficiency and automate processes, improve service level management and the development of skills. The current budget included hosting services, bureau services, network support services, distributed support services and application maintenance services.
She referred to the overview of Police ICT cost drivers. She noted that in 2008/2009 there were major upgrades, which reduced maintenance fees. In terms of network services, maintenance introduced 27 new switching centres due to the increase in infrastructure in SAPS. The Active Directory and new regional support also had to be rendered. Application services, decentralised support services equipment and police digital media had all increased by significant amounts. Management and support was the core of the ICT capability and SITA utilised the industry in
Some of the support or establishment to various strategic projects in the previous year was outlined (see attached presentation for details). These included e-dockets, forensic laboratory exhibit management and vehicle tracking. For 2009-2010 it would undertake rejuvenation of the Police Integrated Case Docket Management System (ICDMS), integrated police systems through a single portal, further deployment of e-dockets and property control and exhibit management. SITA and SAPS were working together in the National Joint Operation Centre and Provincial Operation Centres, towards the implementation for the Confederation Cup.
Ms M Meyer, Commissioner, SAPS, stated that was essential that the Portfolio Committee take note that the expenditure on information systems was extremely high and that the budget was limited, so that there was a need for more funding for expanding the infrastructure.
Ms Schafer asked what exactly was the distribution of the IT equipment; where had it been distributed and how far the distribution had gone, because the feedback from her local police station was that they had minimum equipment.
Ms Kohler-Barnard asked for a provincial breakdown in order to see where the distribution was going. She asked for SITA’s projections and what it still wanted to achieve.
Ms Pienaar replied that she did not have the detail requested about the equipment distributed, and stated that would have to do a report on that issue and submit it later to the Committee.
Mr Mncwango asked what the results were after the implementation of the IT equipment. He asked how many black companies were benefiting from these activities.
Ms Pienaar stated that once again she would get the information on use of Black Economic Empowerment companies and would present this at a later stage.
Mr Schneemann asked what equipment a police station needed, which police stations had the necessary equipment and which police stations were lacking equipment. He then mentioned the issue of training and asked how SITA would make sure that the police were adequately trained to use the equipment.
Ms Meyer stated that SITA provided training prior to each implementation of equipment. IT training was also part of police basic training and the detective training.
The Chairperson asked what expense had SITA improved on in rural areas.
Ms Meyer said that there were nine police stations in the
Mr Mncwango referred to Slide 5 in the presentation and asked SITA to clarify on the firearm license and permit system.
Ms Meyer stated that the firearm permit system was ready and available and would be implemented during this financial year. There was also a SITA website with the application for gun resellers.
Mr Mncwango asked whether the call centre fells under IT support.
Ms Schafer asked what the interaction was between SAPS and the call centre.
Ms Pienaar replied that SITA was running the Gateway Call Centre and catered for calls in eleven languages. SITA had also implemented, with a lot of success, the Independent Electoral Commission’s call centre which was running during the election.
Ms Nhlengethwa asked about the device that took fingerprints, and asked how effective this device was.
Ms Meyer replied that this was called the mobile connectivity device and was quite effective. It had a turn over time of seconds.
South African Police
Mr Mpho Kwinika, President, South African Police Union, reported that he would brief the Committee on some of the issues that the South African Police Union (SAPU) considered most critical. He referred firstly to the SAPS budget, and expressed frustration that the
SAPU was encouraged by the debate to reintroduce specialised units. While it recognised the importance of specialised units, it also hoped that ordinary police officers would not be treated as second-class police officers. There was a tendency to over-concentrate resources in specialised units, to the detriment of station level policing. Hence a balance must always be created in the budgets between specialised units as well as station level police budgets. As an organisation SAPU welcomed the disbandment of the Scorpions and the creation of the Directorate for Priority Crimes Investigation under the auspices of the SAPS. It was of the view that this integration would refocus its members to deal effectively with crime.
SAPU agreed with the President’s comment that the dignity of the police must be restored. Police officers must be given decent salaries to enable them to afford houses and meet their other basic needs. However, the promotions system remains a challenge. Until this system was reviewed, promotions would continue to be a contentious issue between the SAPU members and police management.
He expressed concern about the lack of appreciation of the role that police played in securing the Soccer World Cup. It hoped that the budget would deal with the issue of incentives for those members who would work tirelessly to secure this event. Investigators were not coping, because they were overworked. It was SAPU’s submission that this Committee must therefore ensure that the budget for investigations was increased. SAPU also asked that the Committee should address the entire disciplinary system and procedures, to ensure that they were effective, fair and equitable. The standards of training were not the same. This was another serious matter, which must be attended to as a matter of urgency.
Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (POPCRU) briefing
Mr uNathi ka Theledi, Deputy General Secretary, POPCRU, stated that POPCRU would like to bring to the Committee’s attention its members’ disappointment around the restructuring process that the SAPS had embarked on. The core business of the police was to prevent and combat crime, and POPCRU believed that resource allocation should focus on that aspect. Currently a huge bulk of budget was being used to feed the bloated top structure of the SAPS, which was for the most part comprised of support services. POPCRU submitted that the Department would and should do much better with a “lean and mean” top structure, with larger numbers of personnel where the actual work was taking place on the ground, in order to ensure proper delivery of the required services.
A critical aspect was that all components of the police / private security companies provided safety measures and this took a large chunk of the SAPS budget. He said that there were trained personnel within the SAPS who could deal with the security of the whole Department, yet funds were diverted to private entities, which had the effect of turning SAPS budget into a milk cow.
The Chairperson pointed out that there was no time to take questions. She requested that Committee Members submit their questions in writing and that POPCRU and SAPU should reply to these questions in writing by the end of the week.
The meeting was adjourned.
- Police, Budget Vote Hearings: Independent Complaints Directorate (ICD), Secretariat for Safety and Securit
- Police, Budget Vote Hearings: Independent Complaints Directorate (ICD), Secretariat for Safety & Security
- Independent Complaints Directorate, Secretariat for Safety & Security, State Information Technology Agency
- We don't have attendance info for this committee meeting
Download as PDF
You can download this page as a PDF using your browser's print functionality. Click on the "Print" button below and select the "PDF" option under destinations/printers.
See detailed instructions for your browser here.