New police minister Nathi Mthethwa will this afternoon receive the first two of several new helicopters acquired to bolster capacity for next June’s FIFA Confederations Cup and the 2010 Soccer World Cup at a ceremony being held at the police air wing base in Pretoria West
It is understood the police may have acquired up to eight Robinson R44 Raven II light helicopters to expand their air wing. The helicopter retails for US400 000 according to the manufacturer`s current price list.
In addition to the helicopters the police are also mulling the acquisition of one or more types of unmanned aerial systems (UAS).
Police spokesman Superintendent Vishnu Naidoo says the police would ideally want one UAS per stadium – of which there are ten. Former police – and now defence – minister Charles Nqakula earlier this year said he also wanted UAS to patrol SA`s porous borders.
As far as can be established, the SA Police Service Air Wing currently comprises:
Eurocopter AS350B2 Squirrel 1
Eurocopter AS350B3 Squirrel 12
30 in total
Beechcraft King Air C90A 1
Bombardier Learjet 31A (VIP) 1
Cessna Citation C680 Sovereign (VIP) 1
Hawker Beechcraft Beechjet 400 (VIP) 1
Pilatus PC-12/47 1 7 in total