NEWS & ANALYSIS

11 000 police officers have no gun licenses - DKB

DA MP says 3 500 uncertified officers also continue to carry firearms

11 000 police officers have no gun licenses

reply to a DA Parliamentary question has revealed that a startling 3 500 uncertified South African Police Service (SAPS) officers continue to carry firearms. It also detailed how approximately 11 000 officers do not have competency certificates.

The DA will ask Parliamentary questions to find out how many of these officers unlawfully fired their gun and ended up injuring or killing a civilian.

Provinces

(ii) Number of Officers who do not have competency certificates

(b) Number of officers who are not yet competent, but still carrying firearms

Eastern Cape

1 273

264

Free State

894

334

Gauteng

3 481

940

KwaZulu-Natal

1 107

125

Limpopo

1 009

543

Mpumalanga

1 117

664

North West

975

308

Northern Cape

565

170

Western Cape

913

125

Total

11 334

3 473

SAPS issue firearm permits to police officials only if they can prove that they are fit and proper and that they successfully completed training to safely handle a firearm.

Therefore, SAPS have failed to ensure that thousands of police officials are in fact fit to have and use their guns. This not only puts the South African public in danger but also the police officials themselves.

Anyone carrying a firearm without a license faces up to 15 years in prison.

The police are already grossly under-trained throughout our country. For thousands of officers, who are meant to be custodians of our safety and security, to continue to carry firearms while not being properly certified, only increases danger for ordinary South Africans.

It is high time that the SAPS transform into the professional police service required to fight crime so that the people of South Africa can feel safe in their homes and on the streets.

Statement issued by Dianne Kohler Barnard, DA Shadow Deputy Minister of Police, 20 October 2017