Statement: Minister of Police on recruitment of detectives, crime intelligence operatives


The Ministry of Police’s plans to bolster its intelligence and detective arms with committed police officers will follow and adhere to strict criterion as part of upholding the integrity of these investigative units.  Amongst the various approaches the ministry will adopt, will be to utilize the re-enlistment process of ex-South African Police Service (SAPS) members. 

This is an undertaking by the Minister of Police, Nathi Mthethwa with reference to a Parliamentary question posed by one of the opposition parties; on the process of re-enlistment of ex-SAPS members, specifically within the detective and intelligence units in the Free State province.  “Over the past months, as the police leadership we have been over-emphasizing one focal point to members of the Force: conviction.  On a daily basis police arrest criminals but we now need to move beyond the arrest phase and secure successful convictions.  The first step towards achieving this is through adequately and properly-trained detectives and intelligence.”

With regards to the recruitment of ex-SAPS members, none were appointed within the detectives and crime intelligence environments in the Free State for the 2009/2010 financial year to date.  “The applicants have been subjected to a security vetting process which has now been finalized and currently in the process of consideration by the provincial commissioner of Free State, after which he will forward his recommendations to the National Police Commissioner for approval,” added the Minister.

The process of re-enlistment is open-ended, in other words, there is no specific closing date but as and when we receive interest from these former members, consideration shall be exercised.  The process shall amongst others be determined by the availability of funded posts, compliance with all enlistment requirements, the skills and competencies of the applicant for re-appointment.

During the process, an applicant whose appointment will promote representivity may receive preference.  Participation in this process does not establish any entitlement to be appointed.  “The National Commissioner is therefore under no obligation to re-enlist former members who so apply and similarly no former member of the SAPS has a right to be re-enlisted on the basis of being formerly employed,” highlighted the Minister.

Those who would not be reconsidered for re-enlistment would be former members who would have reached retirement (early or compulsory retirement age) as well as those who were dishonourably discharged and/or dismissed.  In addition, those members who left the Service pending the finalization of a disciplinary enquiry and/or criminal proceedings and lastly, those who left SAPS due to ill-health retirement.

Minister Mthethwa remains optimistic that capacitating the Force with properly-trained detectives and intelligence will to a large extent decrease crime in South Africa, particularly with the focus on trio crimes (hijacking, business and house robberies).   


For enquiries, please contact:

Zweli Mnisi, Spokesperson to the Minister of Police 082 045 4024