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Safety and Security

The institutional foundations of the democratic transition in South Africa is premised on a movement from an authoritarian approach to policing to one that has fundamental respect for the human rights of others.

COPE-safety and security

For too long the apartheid police institutions played an active role in governing South Africa. Their role was to keep the policies and practices of the Apartheid government intact.

In this sense, policing was political and the institution was thoroughly politicised by the old National Party government. The promise of democracy heralded a new approach to policing in South Africa.

The South Africa Police Service was created in 1995 after an amalgamation of eleven police agencies made up from the old homeland Bantustans, the South African Police Force and the liberation movement security sections.

With the onset of democracy in 1994, the role of the old police was overtaken by the democratic unfolding with freedom. Gone forever was the repressive role that the police was expected to play under apartheid.

Sixteen years into the new democracy, the new role of the police as defenders of the democratic constitution is under threat. Policing in South Africa is in the throes of a moral crisis that threatens the very basis of democracy.

Download Safety & Security policy document

Download the COPE Safety and Security policy document in PDF format.