SAPS promotion policy (Major and Lieutenant ranks) & alleged top heavy structure: input by South African Police Service (SAPS), Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (POPCRU), South African Police Union (SAPU), with Minister

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19 June 2012
Chairperson: Ms A Van Wyk (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Committee received presentations from the Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union, the South African Police Union and the South African Police Service. The focus of the deliberations was on the South African Police Service promotion policy, with special reference to the ranks of Lieutenant and Major and deliberations on the alleged top-heavy nature of the organisational structure of the police force. During the meeting, the Minister of Police presented the newly appointed National Commissioner for Police to the Committee. In words of welcome, the members of the Committee pledged their individual and party support to the new Commissioner.

The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union raised concerns about the unnecessary duplication of functions which rendered the SAPS inoperable in terms of effective service delivery and that the bloated top structure squeezed the SAPS’ prospects of sufficient staffing at the station level where manpower was really needed. The consequence of this challenge was the SAPS’ inability to respond positively to the challenge of its mandate of preventing and combating crime. In their recommendations, POPCRU called for the restructuring of the SAPS structure and serious review of the promotion policy.

The South African Police Union had two major concerns which were that not enough was being done to implement the Safety and Security Sector Bargaining Council (SSSBC) Agreement of  5 April 2011 and that the SAPS was top-heavy and there were too many positions at senior level, particularly at the level of Deputy National Commissioner and Divisional Commissioner. These issues had obvious implications for other senior ranks. SAPU argued that these positions could be reduced in a manner that would both limit duplication and promote efficiency.

The South African Police Service presented the details, figures, statistics and other information regards the grade progression and promotion policies and the state of affairs in the Department over the past five years.

Members of the Committee were very discontented and expressed frustration with the SAPS management for the continual and evident nepotism, poor management and non-compliance to procedures. These managerial faults were dragging the name of the Police force down and it was clear that not much was being done by management to remedy the situation. The use of National Instructions in promotion and appointment within the SAPS was criticised and Committee members were of the opinion that the structure needed a complete overhaul.

The National Commissioner said that at a later stage, the SAPS would come back to the Committee and present a full Human Resource strategy starting from recruitment, promotions, service terminations, up to retirement and the addressing of some of the concerns such as promotion and appointments. The SAPS would do the necessary consultations, and in partnership with the various stakeholders make the necessary amends and establish the way forward.

The members said that although the meeting had to end, they were still not satisfied with performance, presentation and response by the SAPS management.

Meeting report

Introduction of the new National Commissioner
The Acting Chairperson said that the meeting was very important because the Minister of Police was going to present the newly appointed National Police Commissioner, Ms Mangwashi Victoria Phiyega, to the Committee. The Acting Chairperson welcomed the Minister and the National Commissioner to the meeting.

The Minister of Police, Mr Nathi Mtethwa, said that after the appointment of the National Commissioner, there had been both messages of congratulations and reservations from the public.

National Commissioner Mangwashi Phiyega said that she was ready and willing to serve the nation. The SAPS was on a journey which was full of challenges and they were all ready to face the challenges. There was clarity of purpose and the Minister had identified 10 crucial priorities that were going to be the guideline for the SAPS. She said the SAPS was committed to continual improvement and, in that regard, the National Commissoner was going to make a national tour to familiarise herself with the challenges and meaningfully embrace the challenges before her.

Mr V Ndlovu (IFP) welcomed the National Commissioner and said that the Committee was ready to support her in the execution of her duties while properly carrying out oversight on the executive.

Ms D Kohler-Barnard (DA) said that she was very impressed by the CV of the National Commissioner and was certain that she had the managerial capacity to solve the crucial problems which the SAPS was facing. There was a lot to clean up and clear up in the SAPS and the first moves of the National Commissioner would set the pace to be followed over the years. She pledged her support in assisting the National Commissioner execute her duties and promised to watch all the moves of the National Commissioner.

Rev K Meshoe (ACDP) welcomed the National Commissioner and hoped that there would be good news about the SAPS in the future. He also pledged the support and prayers of the Committee.

Mr M George (COPE) thanked the Minister of Police and the National Commissioner for joining the meeting as it would not have been good for Parliament to go on recess without having seen the newly appointed National Commissioner. He cautioned the National Commissioner of the huge and critical role of the department she headed. The citizens counted on the SAPS for security and the Committee was ready to support the SAPS and its leadership. 

Ms M Molebatsi (ANC) welcomed the Minister and the National Commissioner. The ANC was convinced that there was going to be a positive change within the SAPS.

The Acting Chairperson presented a file to the National Commissioner which consisted of reports by the Committee on several issues of interest over the past few years. The Acting Chairperson promised to get in contact with the National Commissioner for them to study the content of the file in greater detail.

Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (POPCRU) submission
Mr Lebogang Phepheng, Deputy General Secretary of the POPCRU, congratulated the National Commissioner of Police on her appointment to the head of the SAPS. POPCRU was willing and able to forge alliance and good partnership with any person who was appointed by government to lead the South African Police Service (SAPS).

Mr Phepheng said that POPCRU had on a number of occasions raised the matter of the alleged top-heavy structure of the SAPS. The core business of the SAPS was to prevent and combat crime, and therefore, the budget and the related resources of the SAPS should be channeled as such instead of the current significant and intentional diversion of funds to feed the top-heavy structure which is more of a support structure. It was the view of POPCRU that Batho Pele principles were being violated by SAPS whereby funds allocated to prevent and combat crime were being utilised for inflated salary bills. There were many senior positions created at the pinnacle of the structure at the level of the Deputy Director General, of which most of these positions were a duplication of services with adverse effects on the budget. Each of the senior officers had a salary of above R1.2 million per annum from the SAPS budget. Below each of them, there were a number of Chief Directors and a lot of Directors. There were 13 Divisional Commissioners, 9 Provincial Commissioners and around 7 Deputy National Commissioners.

The current top-heavy structure should be down-sized and this could only be achieved if SAPS could merge some components that rendered similar services. Some of the components within SAPS were a mere duplication in terms of functions. Examples were given about the Human Resource Management and Supply Chain Management. Personnel management, human resource utilisation and human resource development should be merged to form one component headed by one Divisional Commissioner. Supply chain management could be incorporated as a sub-component of Financial and Administration Services and be headed by one Divisional Commissioner.

As indicated during the 2012/13 Budget Vote discussions, it was the view of POPCRU that the leadership of SAPS must ensure that sufficient funds were invested in the field of training and development of officers at all levels. It was important to have sufficiently skilled and properly trained officials to be entrusted with the responsibility of making sure that those who were in conflict with the law were taken care of within the relevant prescripts, instead of allocating a bigger chunk of the budget to the top-heavy structure as it had been the case. As per SAPS Human Resource Management plan of 2011/12 financial year, it was indicated that the National office had the biggest figure in terms of personnel deployment exceeding Free State, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, North West and Northern Cape provinces. The following figures were given with regard to the number of personnel. The SAPS National Head Office had 18 425 staff, Western Cape 24 335; Eastern Cape 23 949; Northern Cape 8384; Free State 14 402; KwaZulu Natal 29 751; North West 11 668; Mpumalanga 11 654; Limpopo 14 298; and Gauteng 41 941.

Mr Phepheng said that POPCRU’s view was that allocation and expansion of resources must apply where there was a need and some of the procedures such as lease agreements had to be centralised.

The top-heavy structure of SAPS brought about the following results:
▪ Unnecessary duplication of functions, rendering SAPS inoperable in terms of effective service delivery;
▪ The bulk budget was consumed at the top of the SAPS structure;
▪ Administrative “nightmares” and unnecessary delays in decision making;
▪ The structure had only managed to create red tape that did not translate to meaningful programmes that SAPS was supposed to implement;
▪ This bloated structure squeezed SAPS’ prospects of sufficient staffing at the station level where manpower was really needed;
▪ The consequence of this challenge was SAPS’ inability to positively respond to the challenge of its mandate of preventing and combating crime.

POPCRU recommended that the effectiveness of the structure should not be drawn directly to the numbers employed but rather the calibre of such personnel. It was therefore viewed as wasteful expenditure if resources were channeled to feed only a certain section of SAPS.

A flatter and more horizontal organisational structure was required for a better service delivery to the nation rather than the many layers of command and control currently in existence. A revised structure was necessary to incorporate the advantages of decentralisation of work and authority, along with specialised skills that will be available at station level.

The focus of the restructuring should be directed towards reducing the provincial and national structures and completely dissolving the clusters in order to improve coordination and the provision of functional policing and the support services. The moving of skilled personnel to stations was going to increase the leadership, management, decision making and skill levels at stations to deal with the stations’ unique crime challenges.

The management, monitoring and evaluation of the police stations were the keys to success in combating and preventing crime.

The increase of SAPS’ staff establishment at the station level should be the key feature of SAPS’ medium term planning with the emphasis on recruiting quality above quantity and ensuring the effective, disciplined skills development of recruits, in line with SAPS policing responsibilities and priorities.

Promotion Policy (with special reference to Majors and Lieutenants)
Mr Phepheng said that since 2005, SAPS had no Promotion Policy. It had instead been using National Instructions as a tool for upward mobility. This had resulted in a huge deadlock in middle management and junior ranks being deprived upward mobility in terms of promotion. As a result of this, some staff had to spend approximately ten to fifteen years of their careers in one rank. In 2010, SAPS reintroduced the military ranks to its organogram and this resulted in a serious challenge as SAPS introduced these ranks without proper criteria to promote staff to these ranks. A new promotion policy was then introduced to the service as a signed agreement in order to ease challenges of promotion within SAPS. The first phase of this promotion policy was done in 2011/12. This promotion did not make any impact in clearing the blockages. This was as SAPS was still experiencing challenges with the proper implementation of this policy due to unavailability of a revised salary structure. There was also a crucial need for SAPS to compile a compensatory framework for scarce skills.

POPCRU had the following recommendations:
▪ There should be a budget set aside for promotion to new ranks;
▪ There should be a budget for grade progression;
▪ A new salary structure must be developed to accommodate this new development;
▪ There should be a new salary structure for Public Service Act employees who are supposed to be incorporated by SAPS;
▪ A clear promotion programme for each financial year should be developed; and
▪ SAPS must fill all vacant funded positions.

Mr Phepheng said SAPS should review each individual’s job according to its worth and actual need. This had to be done from the top down and the funds saved in ridding SAPS of those in unnecessary positions and those not qualified to be in the service, could be used to narrow the wage gap between the lower ranks thereby attracting a more professional individual into the service.

Mr George said that it was important for the Committee to ask SAPS management what the huge staff was doing at headquarters. What did POPCRU mean by the inability of SAPS to meet its mandate of preventing and combatting crime? He asked why SAPS always came up with bright ideas yet ended up being the very people to bring down the ideas such as in the case with sector policing and clusters. Why do police no longer want clusters which are fairly new? Was POPCRU not consulted when the clusters were formed?

Mr Nathi Mabuida, Deputy President of POPCRU, said the reason for the request for the dissolution of clusters was that there were authority conflicts between cluster commanders and station commanders. In the constitutional spheres of government, provision was made for local, provincial and national government and clusters had no place in this hierarchy.

Ms Kohler-Barnard asked if POPCRU had compared SAPS structure to that of another Department which had a similar budget and challenges. The three main issues were nepotism, promotion of incompetent members and non-adherence to procedures. She listed examples of family members of top SAPS officials who got promotions unfairly and hoped that the new National Commissioner would correct the situation.

Mr Phepheng said that the response with regards to departmental comparisons was going to be given in writing through the office of the Chairperson. The South African Police was one-tenth of the Chinese police but the Chinese Police was not militarised, it did not have a tall organisational structure and was not top-heavy. POPCRU was going to make available a report on nepotism to the Committee Chairperson and the National Commissioner. 

Ms Molebatsi asked if POPCRU was of the view that the intended discipline which the introduction of the new ranks sought to instill had been achieved. What did POPCRU suggest should happen after the findings of the audits which were conducted? What should happen after the replacement of the clusters? What were the findings of the fingerprint machine that exploded in a car?

Mr Phepheng replied that a military rank on the shoulders of the Police was not a tool to fight crime. Around the world, the non-militarised systems were more effective. After the skills audit, the National Commissioner could place senior managers where the needs of the communities were and also retrain them to meet the desired skills level. After the dissolution of the clusters, the officials should be sent to the stations.

Mr Ndlovu asked what the reaction of POPCRU was to the fact that there were members who had been in one rank for even more than 10 years. What did POPCRU do about SAPS management refusing to abide by the agreements entered into? What was the reaction of POPCRU to the promotion of family members by senior officials?

Mr Phepheng replied that POPCRU was of the opinion that officials should fully recuse themselves from the recruitment panel and process when it concerned a family member. The National Commissioner was expected to give specific instructions in this regard.

Rev Meshoe asked what response POPCRU got from SAPS management on the concern that some members had stayed for several years in one position or rank. How had POPCRU assisted in the implementation of the sector and cluster policing? POPCRU was suggesting that SAPS top management should be trimmed. What was their suggestion with regard to how the trimming should be done and the procedures involved?

Mr Mabuida replied that from 1993 to 2004 SAPS had an interim promotion policy, but from 2004 until 2011 SAPS had been promoting its members through National Instructions. It was only in 2011 when the military ranks were being introduced that the Unions insisted that there must be a clause that SAPS had to have a promotion policy. There was a difference between sector and cluster policing. POPCRU was of the view that Cluster Commanders were unnecessary because they technically replaced area commanders. POPCRU wanted a situation where resources were sent directly to the lowest levels where they were needed.

Mr Phepheng said that with regards to the trimming of the organisational structure, a skills audit was necessary and the results were going to be matched to the needs at every level. The head office needed support not salary earners. There was no policy or law in the country that said that a commissioner or a general could not be a station commander. The essential needs were needed in the field and not in the offices where support work and coordination was done.

Ms D Sibiya (ANC) asked if POPCRU wanted to amend SAPS policies.

Mr Phepheng replied that the intention was not to amend the Police Act but POPCRU wanted to work hand in hand with the Committee and SAPS management to review the promotion policies and agreements. 

The Acting Chairperson asked POPCRU to identify where there were challenges with regards to training and development in communities. What did POPCRU mean by decentralising authority? Was POPCRU satisfied that the promotion policies of SAPS was known, clear and implemented appropriately and were members of the force aware of the expectations required of them to qualify for promotion?

Mr Phepheng replied that the needs of the stations varied with the local environment. An example was the fact that there were instances where it was reported that there were no cars meanwhile the problem was actually that there were no drivers or the police staff did not have licences. In relation to decentralisation of authority, there was a lot of authority at national and provincial level. Meanwhile the station commanders needed the power to take immediate action to combat crime or to improve the general services of the police force. The administrative red tape was too much.

South African Police Union (SAPU) submission
SAPU President, Mr Mpho Kwinika, said that
SAPU had for many years participated in discussions and negotiations with SAPS either directly or in the SSSBC (Safety and Security Sector Bargaining Council) where they had raised concerns related to both the top-heavy organisational structure of the police as well as the unfairness of the process of populating the newly created ranks of lieutenant and major. The two major concerns raised by SAPU were that not enough was being done to implement the Safety and Security Sector Bargaining Council (SSSBC) Agreement of  5 April 2011 and that SAPS was top-heavy with too many positions at senior level, particularly at the level of Deputy National Commissioner and Divisional Commissioner. These issues had obvious implications for other senior ranks. SAPU argued that these positions could be reduced in a manner that would both limit duplication and promote efficiency.

Introduction of new Ranks and the Promotion Policy
The announcement of the reintroduction of a military styled rank structure for SAPS on 1 April 2010 and the introduction of the military ranks of Lieutenant and Major were followed by intense discussions and negotiations between the employer (SAPS) and employee organisations, notably SAPU and POPCRU. These negotiations resulted in the signing of SSSBC Collective Agreements No 2/2011 and 3/2011.

With regards to the implementation of SAPS Promotion and Grade Progression Policy and the populating of the new ranks of Lieutenant and Major, SAPU had the following concerns:
▪ The confusing nature of the implementation periods of the policy.
▪ The two new ranks were established on the same salary band as the two ranks immediately above them.
▪ The announcement of the two new ranks raised expectations, especially amongst members that had been in their current ranks for many years and who met the requirements for promotion. In practice, however, these promotions were limited as a result of budget constraints, although budget limitations as a factor were never mentioned in the Agreement 2/2011.
▪ The relatively small number of posts allocated so far for these promotions.
▪ The promotions focused on seniority and equity to the complete exclusion of disability.

SAPU proposed that
SAPS and the unions should agree on the issues that need further clarification about the implementation of the process. This should include more clarity on the process of making available posts to accommodate promotions to the new ranks. SAPU also recommended that SAPS should enter into negotiations with the unions in terms of their undertaking to develop a new compensation model that would sufficiently distinguish between the new ranks and those above them. In this regard SAPU proposed the staggering compensation model that it suggested to SAPS during earlier negotiations. This model allowed for pay progression for every promotion. SAPS had rejected this proposal and indicated preference for an overlapping model. The last recommendation was the promotion criteria for new ranks should be reviewed to  also provide for representation of members with disabilities.

The top-heavy structure of SAPS
SAPU’s contention was that the organisational structure of SAPS was top-heavy. Mr Kwinika said although this was in many ways a problem inherited from the past, the situation had since 1995 become progressively worse. He traced the evolution of SAPS from 1994, outlining the steady increase in numbers within senior management. The analysis showed that SAPS senior management structure had tripled over the decade. In outlining some international comparisons, Mr Kwinika used the examples of Australia, Hong Kong and London to illustrate that the SAPS structure was top-heavy.

SAPU’s concerns were that there was a gradual growth in SAPS senior management positions at national level in particular, but also at provincial level. This growth came at a time when there were clear indications that SAPS personnel numbers were set to reduce over the next three financial years from 192 622 currently to 188 490 in the 2014/15 financial year. The cutback in police staff numbers was announced by the Minister of Finance in his budget speech in Parliament on 22 February 2012.

SAPU also raised the concern that the many divisions existed only for the purpose of creating opportunities for senior appointments and creating posts for persons rather than determining whether the posts were necessary. SAPU was concerned that the disproportionate number of posts at senior management level, at national and provincial head offices, also led to the allocation of a disproportionate cut from the remuneration budget to the senior ranks.

▪ Serious consideration should be given to reducing the number of Deputy National Commissioners to three.
▪ Serious considerations should be given to merging some of the divisions.
▪ Work-study investigations should be carried out on personnel ratios and number of staff in relation to the next higher or lower rank levels and how the structure of the police could be sensibly flattened to become leaner at all levels. SAPU recommended the involvement of independent work-study experts to review the organisational and post structure of SAPS.

The Acting Chairperson said that it was disturbing to hear that SAPS had been conducting appointments on National Instructions instead of the policies in place. It had been noticed that the ranks attached to a job and the compensation always changed but the job descriptions did not change.

Mr Ndlovu asked what happened when SAPS management did not adhere to the agreements and what did SAPU do in such circumstances. Besides the bargaining chamber, where else did SAPS management and the unions meet to discuss such issues and how were the differences resolved?

Mr Kwinika replied that when SAPS failed to adhere to agreements, SAPU declared disputes. After the declaration of the dispute, an arbitrator was identified and called upon to settle the dispute. There were even options to take such matters to the Labour Court.

Ms Molebatsi asked what was going to happen to the heads of the divisions if the Human Resource Divisions were merged as proposed by POPCRU.

Mr Kwinika replied that in the proposed structure, there was a Divisional Commissioner responsible for human resources and another Divisional Commissioner responsible for physical resources.

Ms Kohler-Barnard asked what was going to be done with the huge number of officials who may have been promoted for reasons other than expertise and merit. Where were these people going to go to and what did SAPU propose in this regard?

Mr Kwinika replied that when the Minister of Police announced the militarisation of SAPS, it was meant to address the issues of human resources. This meant that police members were to be afforded opportunities for promotion. What mattered most was the need for police members to be able to move forward in their careers. If a position became redundant, it could be explained to the incumbent that the post had to be revoked or the individual could be redeployed to a position to fit his current skills.

Mr George asked what kind of experts SAPU wanted to be used for the restructuring. Were they academics or professionals?

Mr Kwinika replied there were many people in the South African society who had expertise in skills audits, be they were academics or professionals, what was of relevance was the result and positive effect on SAPS.

The Acting Chairperson said that with regards to the appointments and promotions as spelt out in Regulation 45, it was important for the Committee to consider ensuring that the duty of appointing these top officials was the responsibility of the Minister, upon the recommendation of the National Commissioner. Withdrawing these powers from the National Commissioner did not mean that SAPS was not responsible for the appointments but these appointments had to be confirmed by the Minister.

Mr Kwinika said that Regulation 45 had been grossly misused. The careers of many police members had been stifled by the misuse of Regulation 45.
Department of Police presentation on Promotions
The SAPS management delegation was headed by the National Commissioner, General Mangwashi Phiyega and the presentation was made by the Deputy National Commissioner in charge of Human Resource Management, Lietenant General Magda Stander.

The Committee was given a background and an outline of the consultation and criteria for promotion. This was
developed by a task team consisting of Human Resource Utilisation, Personnel Management, Financial Administration Services, Legal Services and Organisational Development. The criteria were mandated by the National Management Forum. The criteria used in promoting from Warrant Officers to Lieutenants, Warrant Officers to Captains and from Captains to Majors included; representivity as per guidelines, provided that in the same case of the same race group, male members may supplement the shortage of female members, qualification, seniority, uninterrupted service performance, suitability to function on the next higher level and transferability.

With regards to the process for promotion, the Divisional and Provincial Commissioners had to appoint panels responsible for the placement of conditionally promoted members. Panels consisted of representatives from Human Resource Utilisation, Personnel Management and Organisational Development as well as representatives of relevant environments such as Visible Policing, Detective Services and at station level, Station Commanders. The Panels had to establish all vacancies in the Division or Province, evaluate the profile of conditionally promoted members towards suitability to function on the next higher level and identify posts for placement of members, inform the member of the post he or she will be placed in and afford the member the opportunity to accept or reject the post offered, deal with any possible representations with regard to placement, provide the Provincial or Divisional Commissioner with recommendations for approval and certification of the process by the Provincial or Divisional Commissioners and submission to Head Office for a final conclusion.

General Stander outlined the representivity guidelines for the promotion of Lieutenants, Captains and Majors with regards to gender and race. These details and statistics were given at both national and provincial levels. At provincial level, the statistics of Lieutenants, Captains and Majors were as follows;
Western Cape 372; Eastern Cape 766; Northern Cape 108; Free State 407; KwaZulu Natal 887; North West 542; Mpumalanga 183; Limpopo 999; and Gauteng 768. These statistics were further broken down to show the promotions within the various departments and within the various levels in SAPS. These figures were presented from the 2007/08 financial year through all the years up to the 2011/12 financial year.

General Stander presented the March 2011 SSSBC Agreement on the Post Promotion and Grade Progression Policy of SAPS. This policy was said to be implemented with effect from the 1 April 2013. The grade progression principles included:
availability of funds; recognition of performance; years of service on a salary level or rank; suitability. Subject to these principles, the grade progression of members who qualified had to be effected within that financial year and grade progression for members appointed in terms of the South African Police Act had to be handled in terms of Agreement 03/2011. Grade progression for employees appointed in terms of the Public Service Act had to be handled in terms of the relevant resolutions. The post promotion principles included: availability of vacant funded post; the advertisement and selection process; satisfactory performance; years of service on a salary level or rank; and suitability. General Stander said that the National Commissioner was under no obligation to fill an advertised post.

After outlining the requirements for post promotions for Police Service Act members in accordance with the 03/2011
SSSBC Agreement, General Stander gave the way forward on promotions within SAPS. This included the following measures:
A new promotion and grade progression policy for SAPS was negotiated in the SSSBC – Agreement 3/2011. This policy was to be effective from 1 April 2013.
The current promotion and grade progression policy for the 2012/13 financial year was regulated in terms of the SSSBC Agreement 2/2011 which provided for the capacitating of Lieutenants, Captains and Majors during the 2011/12 as well as 2012/13 financial year
Any deviation from this Agreement had to be tabled and negotiated in the SSSBC.

General Stander said Regulation 45(9) of SAPS Employment Regulations, 2008, provided that
the National Commissioner may promote an employee into a post without advertising it, and without following a selection process, on the conditions that the National Commissioner was satisfied the employee qualified in all respects for the post; there were exceptional circumstances that warranted the deviation; and such a deviation was in the interest of the Service. The National Commissioner had to record the reasons for the deviation in writing. The statistics and details of these deviations since 2007 to date were outlined.

The Acting Chairperson asked POPCRU and SAPU to give their comments on the presentation by SAPS management before questions were asked by members of the Committee.

Mr Phepheng, POPCRU Deputy Secretary General, said that POPCRU would like to take part in the promotion panel. With regards to Regulation 45, POPCRU appealed that it rather not be removed but relocated to the Ministry. It was important for SAPS to always do research and establish if its programmes and efforts were yielding the desired fruits.

Mr Kwinika, SAPU President, said that he was happy that the presentation from SAPS management confirmed many of the concerns which SAPU had raised. He asked if SAPS management wanted the Chief Operating Officer to be a Deputy National Commissioner. These two offices had different jobs and could therefore not be the same in terms of levels of the structure.

The representative from the Civilian Secretariat of Police said that they were working jointly with SAPS to look at the entire HR component with the aim of professionalising the police service. This work had started with an audit and they were in the process of finalising the report. The next phase was the examination of the recruitment and selection processes within SAPS and the promotions. These reports were to be made available to the Minister of Police and eventually the Portfolio Committee.

The Acting Chairperson said she was worried about the SAPS presentation in relation to the details provided for the reason that the 2010/11 Annual Report indicated different figures from what was presented to the Committee.

Ms Kohler-Barnard asked if the hiring of various members of the force was simply left to the head of the Division. Who controlled the hiring of officials and who had oversight over the hiring of Richard Mdluli’s extended family? Why was nobody noticing the gross irregularities in hiring? What was SAPS position on nepotism? Who was to be held accountable for these wrongs? Was SAPS management receiving instruction from politicians requesting them to hire people and if this was the case, the Committee needed to know.

General Stander replied that when SAPS advertised positions, it did so like every other organisation and did not determine who the applicants to these posts were. The National Instruction on appointments regulated the process and there was the appointment of panel members who recused themselves if they had an interest.

The Acting Chairperson said that it was important for members to stick to issues of principle and clarity and not bring up individual cases as SAPS management was not in a position to provide such information and that was going to take much time.

Mr George said that the presentation from SAPS management was not good enough. The serious allegations which the Committee had to deal with could not be resolved based on the shallow information provided by the presentation. The many figures were confusing, wrong and were not helping in resolving the crucial problems. Scientific and not general answers were required. The process of promotion was too bad as SAPS management said that it was the duty of the person who was being appointed or promoted to declare their criminal or disciplinary records. What was the duty of the HR team and what were the files at HR meant for?

Ms Molebatsi said that the statement from General Stander that the HR department had not noticed that some individuals, who were retired or dead, were up for promotion was very bad and a display of incompetence. Why was there a decrease in the highly skilled work force which was the most critical section of the police force?

Mr Ndlovu said that the major problem which was before the Committee was the misuse of Regulation 45. What was SAPS management doing or planning to do about it? What were the exceptional circumstances that allowed for this misuse and why was there a deviation at all?

Ms Sibiya asked if the relationship between SAPS management and the Unions was in good standing. Did the negotiations on the model for compensation take place and if it did not take place, what were the reasons given for this situation.

Mr George said that there was no sufficient justification to excuse SAPS from the bad situation they were in. The SAPS did not help with their presentation.

In the midst of intense frustration and discontent expressed by the members, the Acting Chairperson pleaded with the members to give SAPS management an opportunity to respond to the questions. This was on the basis that the Members were so discontented with SAPS management that the questions and frustration kept coming and not allowing an opportunity for SAPS management to adequately respond to the questions already asked.

National Commissioner Mangwashi Phiyega said that the meeting and the intense interaction with the Committee was a learning and counseling opportunity for SAPS. After giving a brief description and summary of the day’s deliberations, the National Commissioner said that at a later stage, SAPS would come back to the Committee and present a full HR strategy starting from recruitment, promotions, service terminations, up to retirement and the addressing of some of the concerns such as promotion and appointments. SAPS would do the necessary consultations, and in partnership with its various stakeholders make the necessary amends and establish the way forward. With regard to training and development, SAPS was going to build and enhance the managerial capacity at all levels. SAPS was going to take new steps with regards to interaction with stakeholders and improve the openness for more oversight and cooperation.

The Acting Chairperson thanked the delegates and the National Commissioner for the very informative deliberations.

The meeting was adjourned.


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