THE continuous power struggles between the police and the citizens of this country are intolerable in any democratic country. The South African police system is lacking integrity and seems intent on destabilising the mutual understanding that partially co-exists between it and the communities it serves.
The gruesome acts perpetrated by the system against its own citizens are exceptionally horrific in this fragile rainbow nation. In the past few weeks we have been terrified by the images we have seen on our television screens – all we watch now is horrific news.
Some of the dreadful stories we've come across include a taxi driver from Mozambique who was dragged down the street in front of onlookers for 100m and later died in the police holding cells; Andries Tatane, another victim, a civilian who was involved in a protest march was also killed by police in the Setsoto Municipality; and the Marikana saga where dozens of miners were killed and injured. These are the examples of police brutality that we see in our media.
These acts are exceptionally barbaric in this frail democracy. The police are the cornerstones of any society that guards and upholds the constitution of the country, for the benefit and security of its constituency.
The government of South Africa should act swiftly against any person/s who are intent on making this country ungovernable and the justice system should have no mercy for such individuals.
Xenophobia, domestic abuse and rape are some of the crimes in this country we seem to be subjected to virtually daily, irrespective of colour or race of a person.
The police force must go on an intensive training course (that includes how to decipher the constitutional law) before they can walk around our communities with weapons in their hands.
Consider the inflammatory words of Bheki Cele that police should "shoot to kill" criminals without worrying about "what happens after that" and that "the police should match the firepower of criminals" and use deadly force in order to uphold the law.
It seems that some law enforcement officers gravely took the advice. Section 49 of Act 51 of 1977 was substituted by Section 7 of Act 122 of 1998, which is now known as the Criminal Procedure Amendment Act of 2012.
It clearly defines under which circumstances the police should otherwise use deadly force. In most instances we have experienced trigger-happy policemen, who are intent on serving their own agendas, not to preserve and protect the society they are entrusted to.
Sizwe Mda, Grahamstown