Monday, September 16, 2013

Cops waste millions


GRAEME HOSKEN and QUINTON MTYALA | 16 September, 2013 06:13

On duty SAPS member. File photo.
Image by: Daniel Born

Restructuring and alleged mismanagement of deployments in the police has resulted in up to 14000 officers being placed in either non-existent or already occupied posts.

This is revealed in an internal police staffing report leaked to The Times. The report paints a picture of a bloated police top structure that, critics say, is costing taxpayers millions of rands while police stations are undermanned.
A senior ANC MP has called on police salaries and promotions to be curbed by the Department of Public Service and Administration. Yesterday, Annelize van Wyk, chairman of the parliamentary portfolio committee on policing , said: "Promotions in the police have been arbitrary. We need a more formalised structure .''
National police commissioner Riah Phiyega is expected to appear in parliament tomorrow to brief MPs on police restructuring and expenditure.
Van Wyk said that though Phiyega had decreased the number of deputy national commissioners from six to three, questions remained about where the deputies would be placed.
Phiyega earns about R1.6-million a year and her deputies are paid R1.2-million each. The nine provincial commissioners earn about R1.1-million each.
SA Police Union president Mpho Kwinika said that though Phiyega had fewer deputies she had seven senior officers reporting to her.
''[She] has 'parked' senior officers meant to give her support, bringing in additional people who occupy either non-existent positions or posts already occupied. This undermines the SAPS's command and control structures.
''She is a technocrat and, though everyone thought she was good and would use her management knowledge to slim down her office, she has instead bloated it, costing taxpayers millions in salaries.
Kwinika said: ''She has done things unheard of in the Public Service ... created positions of deputy director-generals in her office, and 'inflated' the ranks of certain positions. She's created post and unit duplications with crime intelligence and presidential protection, which should fall under the policing division, now reporting directly to her.''
Phiyega also had two research sections, one which fell under corporate services; the other under strategic management, research, monitoring and evaluation.
Kwinika said a similar process took place with the reshuffling of provincial commissioners. ''When General Mzwandile Petros moved from the Western Cape to Gauteng, instead of using the staff from the previous provincial commissioner he brought his own, adding additional manpower to his office."
The union said Limpopo had posts for only 300 lieutenants and majors, but there were 999 in the province.
During the implementation of the militarised rank structure in the 2011-2012 financial year, more than R148-million was spent on promoting about 5000 police personnel, according to the union.
DA spokesman on policing Diane Kohler Barnard said the portfolio committee had on several occasions raised the issues of staff deployments and the top-heavy police structure with the police management.
She said "real policing" suffered because police stations were deliberately understaffed to fund a "bloated" head and provincial offices.
The compilation of the internal police report was overseen by SAPS performance management component head Major-General Thomas de Wit.
Presented to the unions in December by De Wit, the report lists the root causes of the police's problems as:
Continuous restructuring, which affects organisational, functional and post structures, causing instability because of the focus on post creation instead of on job purpose and function;
Employees placed in posts in which no vacancies existed;
Poor performance not being managed, with non-performing employees transferred to create vacancies;
Mass promotions to the ranks of lieutenant and major;
Imbalances in personnel distribution; and
Financial consequences of incorrect placements not being taken into consideration.
Police spokesman Lieutenant-General Solomon Makgale said: "Since 2010 all the police organisational structures have been revised and updated, and are currently being implemented.
"[The police service] is a constantly changing organisation in respect of the deployment of operational personnel due to the disposition of crime and emerging crime trends, promotions, transfers and enlistments, and you find distortions in the systems."
Makgale said in November that police records showed that 2 803 members had been placed outside the Resource Allocation Guide - a planning tool used to determine the number and levels of posts required. ''The use of the concept 'members employed outside the [guide]' is misinterpreted. What the SAPS communicated is that there are members placed outside the organogram.
"The explanation given for this is that they had members in certain units who were placed in positions [that] are not yet defined according to the approved structures, and at some units they are having posts which are not filled.
"The reasons vary . All police personnel occupy funded posts. All that is left is placing personnel in accordance with the approved structure [and] rectifying distortions caused by moving people around to meet emerging needs."




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