There are 180 vehicles standing at the SAPS workshop in Welkom to be repaired, but the workshop has no parts, and has not ordered any, leaving the mechanics and panelbeaters in limbo.
The DA has for years complained about the police being under-resourced, one of the main problems being the lack of vehicles. Normally vehicles taken in for repairs would be released again after three months, but these 180 vehicles, which are critical for the Free State police to fulfil their mandate of crime fighting, are destined to be there well into the new year.
The SAPS flying squad in Welkom have no vehicles available to attend to any incidents. No service parts have been ordered during the past month, leaving the workshop totally depleted of the necessary resources to do their work.
As the DA has done on numerous occasions, we are pleading that the various logistical departments within the SAPS be properly resourced to do their work. We cannot expect the police to do the work they are trained for, and employed to do, without giving them the necessary tools to succeed.
It is unthinkable that the lives of Free Staters are being put at risk due to the lack of basic resources required to repair much needed vehicles. Matjhabeng Local Municipality has been a hub of crime in the Free State and requires the necessary SAPS support to fight this scourge.
The DA believes that this situation poses a significant threat to the lives of our beloved residents within the Free State, and as we enter the festive period this December, it is our members of the SAPS who will be working overtime to ensure that we maintain our sanity during this historically silly season. Our hope is that the SAPS answer this call by ensuring our police personnel are well equipped to fight crime.
The DA shall be filing questions to the MEC of Police, Roads and Transport in the Legislature, about this very concerning situation at the workshop and shall also be writing to the Provincial Commissioner of SAPS, for an urgent intervention to resolve the dire situation at the SAPS workshop in Welkom. The people of the Free State deserve better.