Police mourn 29 officers killed in the line of duty
Wreaths were laid on Sunday as the Department of Police held its annual commemoration day at its memorial site at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.
The names of 29 officers who died in the line of duty between April 1, 2017 and March 31, 2018 were added to the wall of remembrance witnessed by family and loved ones of the murdered members.
“We call on all communities and society to work with the police to fight the scourge of police killings,” police minister Bheki Cele said.
“Police members are a national asset and they need to be protected by all of us. One police killing is one to many. My wish is for events of this nature to never happen.
“We should never have to lose our own members through the hands of criminals. The safety of our men and women in blue remains high on the agenda of the SAPS and is at the heart of the SAPS’s strategic imperatives to ensure the safety of our members.”
Acting national police commissioner Lieutenant General Lebeoana Tsumane said SAPS’ resolve to equip officers with the “necessary skills to ensure their safety” will contribute to the fight against crime.
“Throughout September, which has been declared National Police Safety Month, we will continue to increase safety awareness among our members in order to highlight measures to reduce attacks, vehicle accidents and the murder of our police officials,” Tsumane said.
The slain officers’ children were offered support in terms of education, training and development through the South African Police Education Trust Fund, while SAPS’ employee health and wellness component renders “psychological and spiritual support” to the families, friends and colleagues.