Inappropriate spending by Police Ministry a slap in the face of members and public

“It is infuriating to hear that the Ministry of Police – under the hand of Bheki Cele – spends their budget on accommodation, catering and entertainment,” said Ian Cameron, director of community safety at Action Society. “This while some rural police stations close at night because they are underresourced and don’t have things like toilet seats, light bulbs or the basic stationery to do their jobs.”

 

In reply to a parliamentary question Minister Cele revealed that his department has spent over R1,5 billion on accommodation, R42,7 million on catering and R1,8 million on entertainment since March 2019.

 

The Treasury awarded the South African Police Service a budget of R110,2 billion in 2022. However, they underspent their budget by R4 billion last year.

 

“The minister’s improper use of funds is just one more area in the management of the police service where he fails,” said Cameron. “While he takes his entire entourage to travel and showboat at every possible event in style, the National Forensic DNA Database has a backlog of more than 180 000 cases, and the National Register for Sex Offenders is a list with barely any names on it.

 

“This revelation is a slap in the face of the hardworking and dedicated members of the police service who try their best with lacking resources and the victims of crime they try to serve.”

 

Instead of wasting money, the Police Ministry’s budget should be spent on crucial services, appointing competent personnel and implementing public-private partnerships to combat crime.

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