No police strike expected on Election Day

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Pretoria - Members of the South African Police Service are expected to be on duty at tomorrow's polls despite allegations that police members would go on strike due to overtime payments.

According to national police spokesperson Senior Superintendent Vish Naidoo no station commander or SAPS member has reported an intention to strike.

"I can assure you, there is no member who will embark on the strike tomorrow. It was only media speculations and no station commander indicated such threats. If any SAPS member goes on an unofficial strike we will take disciplinary action against that member."

He said the disagreements about overtime had been settled and no one had made any further complaints.

Police members who will be working during the voting period will receive a non-pension fixed overtime of R560 per day.

Senior Superintendent Naidoo told BuaNews that thousands of members would be deployed to voting stations and surrounding areas on Tuesday evening already to ensure safety and security of voters.

Safety and Security Minister Nathi Mthethwa said last week that ground forces were ready to protect all citizens voting on Election Day. "They will also provide additional security support to the electoral officers of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC)," he said.

He said government was confident that the fourth democratic elections would be conducted under a peaceful and fair environment.

KwaZulu-Natal remains a major cause of concern especially in hotspots such as Nongoma, Ntabamhlophe, Ulundi, KwaDukuza, Greytown and Msinga.

However, a large number of anti-riot police and soldiers have been deployed in the province to unmask the perpetrators of political violence.

National intervention units have already been working to arrest suspects in election related incidents.