Thursday, 8 November 2012

Police Lawlessness

Take a look at this video footage broadcast by eNCA on South African television.  Take specific note of the scene that is shown 35 seconds into the video.  It shows a South African Policemen clearly hitting an unarmed man on the back of his head. 

The incident occurs when a group of policemen trap an unarmed man against a building.  One of the policemen then indicates to the man that he should run away.  As the man obeys, another policemen steps forward and hits the man across the back of the head, before allowing him to run away as instructed by the first policemen.

After the recent violence and brutal killings during the Marikana miners strike, one would think that members of the South African Police Service would have been well briefed about the rights of civilians and the duty of the police to not only uphold the law, but to themselves obey the law.  Yet clearly this did not happen.

It does not matter what our personal opinion may be about the striking De Doorn workers and the actions that they have taken during the strike.  We South Africans need to unite in showing absolutely no tolerance whatsoever when our South African Police Service degenerates to the point where they brazenly break the very laws they are required to uphold.  We simply cannot expect that the lawlessness in our country will come to an end, if the very people who are required to enforce the law, continue to break the law.  It does not matter how minor the incident may seem to be.

What I found even more infuriating than the actions of the policeman shown in the video, was the complete silence from eNCA about this incident.  The video has been shown by eNCA numerous times today and yet, other than mentioning the De Doorn workers strike in general, eNCA does not seem to have even noticed the incident of the policeman striking the man in their video footage. 

Our local South African news services, such as eNCA, need to begin showing a similar tenacity to that of news channels such as Sky News, Al Jazeera, RT, Fox and CNN.  They need to highlight incidents such as these, including unceasingly pursuing those involved to expose them and demand that they explain their actions publically to South Africans. 

I am certain that when individuals realise that they will be personally exposed and required to explain their behaviour on national television, it will go a long way towards reducing these incidents.  It is easy to act when one is part of a crowd, but certainly not so comfortable when one is singled out for ones actions.


  1. My perception about South African social well-being, law & protection, is that this country is being increasingly overrun by criminals; social lawlessness and by those who “feed” crime by a "holier than thou" approach which tries to be objective, but ignore the reality that they are indeed brazenly and or passively supporting the most heinouis social events.

    Often, this support is evident by their silence, saying very little against the criminals; by vociferously finding every opportunity to condemn and criticise policeman who are caught in the adrenalin rush of the fray and dynamic of arrest..

    Indeed, it is abundantly clear that very few people, intellectuals et al, stand up and produce positive suggestions about helping policeman to experience safety, helping policeman to make their career a truly fulfilling and positive one...

    Converse to any positive evaluation, daily, policemen and women are being threatened, shot at, also killed and murdered by the criminals.

    It is ironic that common folk often severely criticise policemen for arresting the evil ones.

    It is ironic because, according to Christian philosophy, the poor criminal must be protected at any cost; at the cost of a policeman risking his/her life; at the cost of a community being molested, attacked and victimised by criminals.

    Surely this irony of Christianity is a joke, surreal?

    I sometimes get very sick thinking about people who tolerate crime while at the same time they are intolerant to those who execute the law, those who must witness heinous murders, violence and bloodletting, witnessing the dregs of society carelessly and unfeelingly committing the grossest of crimes, trying to get away from the law, always pretending to be innocent.

    Surely, such tolerance is counter culture? Or is this tolerance the fruit of the French Revolution, Communism, Marxism, socialism, humanism, modernism...?

    I am often disturbed by liberal Christians and humanists: passively encouraging depraved behaviour; fielding criticism to those whose job it is to protect society against overwhelming depravity?

  2. Apparently the De Doorn workers who are on strike earn less than R70 per day. (Less than $9) That is unconscionable to say the least. After deductions these workers are earning about R51 per day. (About $6.40 a day.) I would be in front of the strike.

    As for the police, they certainly have a tough job. However I agree that the police have to be held to the highest of standards if we are going to bring an end to the lawlessness in our country. I also think the media must begin actively and relentlessly targeting those in charge to hold them accountable for police who are poorly trained and ill equipped to deal with these scenarios. Why are they not actively videoing the offending strikers so they can arrest and prosecute the strikers when the strike is over and emotions are no longer running high.

  3. I am reaching the conclusion that in South Africa crime is as lucrative industry as gold mining.

    This is the reason why the police are not sufficiently equipped to fight crime.

    The government wants crime to succeed; except, if you are found out not to be paying your tax, you WILL be ARRESTED!