SAPS not equipped to find unrest masterminds: ISS

SAPS not equipped to find unrest masterminds: ISS

South Africa's crime intelligence agencies do not have the capacity to fish out those who masterminded the July 2021 unrest. 

This aerial view taken on July 15, 2021, shows fire gutted at the Game store in Queen Nandi Drive in Durban. The businesses were hit by looters on July 13, despite the troops President Cyril Ramaphosa deployed to try to quell unrest. As pillaging erupted

That's the opinion of crime analyst and senior researcher at the Institute for Security Studies, Dr Johan Burger.


He has been reacting to the findings of the SA Human Rights Commission’s final report on the riots.


The commission found the police failed in their basic mandate to detect the planning and execution of the destruction of infrastructure, vandalising of property and looting of shops and other businesses in mainly KZN and Gauteng.


Burger says although there has been an increase in visible public order policing, a lot of work still needs to be done to bolster the SAPS' crime intelligence unit.


"I am not as convinced that the intelligence agencies, both the state security agency and our police's crime intelligence division have improved to a level that would enable them to provide the kind of early warning intelligence that is required for the police to effectively react and even proactively when situations of the possible recurrence of such incidents should happen." 

 READ: Case against 65 suspected unrest instigators postponed to April

Burger says the South African Police Service isn't capable of conducting the type of investigation requested by the Human Rights Commission, to pinpoint individuals or groups who orchestrated the unrest.


"I am doubtful. The police do a criminal investigation against groups or individuals and so on, I am not certain that they can provide the kind of investigation suggested in the commission's report. The public of South Africa now needs and deserves to know what happened to the arrests that were made and where are we?"

newswatch new banner 3


Show's Stories