Pretoria: 18 January 2021 – Despite numerous calls by management of the South African Police Service (SAPS) for an end to attacks on police officials, this disturbing pattern continues unabated.
The recent outcry follows the murder of a 53-year-old Warrant Officer on Sunday, 17 January 2021 in Tsolo in the Eastern Cape.
At the time of his death, the deceased member was attending to a complaint where a community member had reported that an identified suspect had been recklessly pointing a firearm at the complainant. When the Warrant Officer arrived at the scene, the suspect continued wielding his firearm. A scuffle ensued which led to the member, who had 30 years’ Service being fatally shot. During the scuffle, the suspect was also fatally wounded.
The suspect’s firearm was found lying next to him and has been taken in for ballistic testing to determine whether it has been utilized in the commission of other violent crimes.
The management of the SAPS has condemned the attack and sent condolences to the family of the deceased member.
“The loss of the member is a blow for the organization because it happens at a time when as the organization we are still battling to come to terms with the loss of more than 400 members to the Covid-19 pandemic. This members loss has further dealt a blow to our workforce and skill, when one looks at his years of service to the country. We therefore take this opportunity to urge all citizens to assist us in surrendering all illegal and unwanted firearms in their communities”, said General Khehla Sitole, the National Commissioner of the SAPS.
In light of this incident, the Management of the South African Police Service(SAPS )wishes to remind all citizens to surrender illegal and unwanted firearms including ammunition before the end of the second firearms amnesty period ending, 31st January 2021 without facing prosecution.
Members of the public who are in possession of firearms, firearm parts or ammunition are therefore urged to take advantage of this opportunity by handing in their firearms and ammunition either for destruction, or for re-licensing the specific firearm with a relevant competency at their nearest police station. This also applies to estate firearms whose owners have died.
As of 01 February 2021, those who are found to be in possession of illegal firearms, firearm parts and ammunition are reminded that they will be charged and processed accordingly.