Unions welcome police promotions
TRADE unions have welcomed Police Minister Bheki Cele’s decision to promote 68 000 officers.
The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) and the SA Policing Union (Sapu) yesterday said this was deserved after many years of stalling.
Popcru president Zizamele Cebe-khulu said they had been waiting for a long time for this to happen.
Cele told Parliament early this year they would need R2 billion to promote 68000 officers.
In a media briefing in Cape Town yesterday, Cele said they would find money in their budget to get the promotions done.
Cebekhulu said: “This is a product that has taken us a long time to come up with. As the minister said, this is the first phase of what he announced in his budget speech here in Parliament (in May).
“We are very happy about the decision and the thinking of those leading the country that this is necessary for the police.”
Sapu deputy president Tumelo Mogodiseng said it was because of Cele that they had struck this deal.
He said some of the officers had been without promotion for more than 10 years, and this needed to be corrected.
Cele said the fact that they had reached this point meant they had met their policy objectives and there were funds available for the promotions.
“On the budget implications, if you look at the announcement it was said we would be looking at other items (to cut).
“Some matters will be delayed and some will be scaled down. The fact that it is announced now it means the policy statement has been achieved. It means that money is here.
“It is calculated on a three-year cycle,” said Cele. He added that they had wanted to effect promotions in the police and they had worked with the unions on this.
National Commissioner for Police Lieutenant-General Khehla Sitole said there was an immediate plan and a medium-term plan.
In the next few months the police would promote 28000 members. However, this number would eventually reach 68000 in the next three years.
This was what Cele had also told Parliament early this year, saying there were 68 000 officers who had not been promoted for many years.
Sitole had said they would need R2bn to effect the promotions.
Sitole also announced that they would regrade thousands of members of the specialised units in the police.
These included officers from the Special Task Force, the Tactical Response Team, the National Intervention Unit and other units.
Police during an SAPS Parade at the SAPS Tshwane Academy in Pretoria. Minister Bheki Cwele has announced a decision to promote 68000 officers. | BONGANI SHILUBANE African News Agency( ANA) Archives