“One must ask whether the South African Police Service is turning into the largest supplier of illicit firearms to criminals in South Africa. Whether willingly or not, it is an absolute shame that South Africa is at this point where the police themselves are leading the way in arming criminals in the country”, said Ian Cameron from Action Society.
Action Society has called for a national police firearm audit to be conducted. The request comes after further investigations revealed an increase in firearms stolen from the Norwood Police Station. Earlier today it was reported the number of firearms stolen increased from 158 to 175.
“The South African Police Service (SAPS) currently has no way of knowing exactly how many of their own firearms are still under their control and possession. The Firearm Permit System is still off and has been for almost two years. Cops currently book out firearms and ammunition manually for shifts, that obviously leaves major room for human error, but even more so, criminal opportunity”, added Cameron.
Since March 2021, SAPS’ internal gun ownership permit system had been switch off due to non-payment. This led to the Firearm Permit System (FPS) being switched off.
In addition to the audit, Action Society is requesting that the existing FPS be paid and switched on immediately.
In 2014, 112 assault rifles, handguns, commercial explosives and detonators were seized from a house belonging to an elderly Ukrainian couple in Norwood. It was discovered that the seized firearms were removed from the station’s evidence storeroom. These firearms were handed in to be destroyed by civilians, some were police firearms and others were stolen from evidence room. This is a clear indication that this illegal practice within the station is still at work.