Police Ombudsman Regulations gazetted for public comment

Dan Plato, Western Cape Minister of Community Safety

The draft regulations pertaining to the work of the Western Cape Provincial Police Ombudsman was published in the provincial gazette for comments (Provincial Gazette 7337) on 2 December 2014.

The Western Cape Provincial Police Ombudsman is a South African first, made possible through the Western Cape Community Safety Act, which is aimed at improved policing service delivery. The Provincial Police Ombudsman is legally mandated to investigate complaints from the public about police inefficiency and/or the breakdown in relationship between the police and the community.

The Provincial Police Ombudsman will provide members of the public with an impartial and independent opportunity to lodge complaints for investigation and it is necessary that the regulations uphold both the letter and spirit of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa and of the Western Cape Community Safety Act.

The regulations pertain to the functioning of the Police Ombudsman’s office are open for public comment until 31 January 2015 and stipulate, among others:

  • How and where complaints can be submitted;
  • How complaints received must be processed by the Ombudsman;
  • How the Ombudsman must notify both the complainant and any other organs of state involved of the investigation;
  • How investigations must be conducted and recorded; and
  • The method of resolving complaints.

Furthermore, the regulations compel the Police Ombudsman to monitor the implementation of any recommendations made, in terms of Section 17(9) of the Western Cape Community Safety Act.

Through constructive inputs on the published regulations, the Department of Community Safety can ensure that this vital service, available to the public, is supported with the proper procedures and measures to allow the office of the Provincial Police Ombudsman to effectively do its job.

Any submissions on the regulations can be sent for the attention of Adv JC Gerber by:

  • Posting it to:
    • The Head of the Department of Community Safety,

PO Box 5346

Cape Town

8000

  • Delivering it to:
    • Room 2.18

2nde Floor

35 Wale Street

Cape Town

8000