CSPRI makes submission to the Khayelitsha Commission of Inquiry

On 12 October 2012, CSPRI made a submission to the Commission of Inquiry into allegations of police inefficiency in Khayelitsha and a breakdown in relations between the community and the police in Khayelitsha. This Commission was set up by the Western Cape Premier in August 2012, following allegations from civil society that there was systemic failure by the SAPS in Khayelitsha to prevent, combat and investigate crime, take statements, open cases and apprehend criminals, resulting in a breakdown in relations between the community and the police.

This breakdown in relations is believed to be the cause of the tragic spate of vigilante killings in parts of Khayelitsha where residents have taken the law into their own hands to exact "mob justice" because they have no faith in the ability of the police to undertake thorough investigations, make arrests or render the requisite assistance to secure convictions in reported criminal cases.

 

CSPRI made a submission to this Commission of Inquiry pointing out South Africa's obligations under the UN Convention against Torture and its Optional Protocol. The recommendations touch upon meaningful independent oversight, including at the provincial level; improved training of law enforcement officials; prompt and impartial investigations of allegations of torture; and public co-operation.

 

CSPRI also recommended that the Commission looks at the publication “The police that we want: a handbook for oversight of police in South Africa” by D Bruce and R Neild, which provides a list useful indicators which serve to analyse the extent to which the police service are adhering to “democratic standards.” CSPRI recommends that the Commission incorporate these indicators as standards into their findings by using them to gauge the effectiveness, transparency and accountability of the Khayelitsha police.

 

The full submission can be downloaded here.

 

 

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