The South African Police Service (SAPS) has noted with great concern the reckless comments and sentiments made in the media over the past week on allegations that a large number of members of the SAPS do not have drivers’ licences.
The management of the SAPS wishes to refute the assertions made in this regard. It must be noted that the management of the SAPS waived the possession of a driver’s licence as a requirement for the police recruits in 2010 in order to accommodate the previously disadvantaged racial groups wishing to enlist in the SAPS. This resulted in members who received training in 2011 and 2012, greatly influencing the total number of members who do not have drivers’ licences in the SAPS.
The SAPS comprises operational and support service members. Support service members mainly perform office-based duties and, in this instance, drivers’ licences will not necessarily become a prerequisite.
It is imperative to note that 92,01% of operational members have drivers’ licences and only 7,98% do not have. The 2013/14 Training Provisioning Plan of the SAPS has been developed to address the issue of members not having drivers’ licences. Two testing centres, one in Benoni (Gauteng) and the other in Bishop Lavis (the Western Cape), have been established for this purpose.
The management of the SAPS is confident that through this intervention the challenge will be addressed adequately.