SAPS careers: How to become a Police Officer in SA
The SAPS or the ‘South African Police Service’ is the national police force of the Republic of South Africa. The nine provinces of South Africa have 1116 police stations and as a result, there are many SAPS careers available. South African police service vacancies are also on the rise as the South African government is seeing a need to increase funding to this sector.
The SAPS is responsible for preventing, investigating and combating crime. The various individuals in the SAPS are tasked with maintaining public order, protecting and securing the inhabitants of South Africa. SAPS careers involve upholding and enforcing the law of the country, create a safe and secure environment for all people in the South African Republic. The SAPS must prevent anything that might challenge the safety or security of any community or individual. They must investigate any crimes that threatens the safety or security of any community or individual. Lastly they are tasked with ensuring that criminals are brought to justice and participate in initiatives to address the causes of crime.
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The SAPS is divided into two divisions: the SAPS and the Metro Police. The SAPS is South Africa’s national police force and the Metro Police is the city’s police force. Each city in South Africa has its own dedicated police force. Both control and prevent crime, but the SAPS is mainly a reactive service. They respond to and investigate crimes. Then by comparison, the Metro Police’s approach is more proactive. They have an emphasis on preventing crime and reducing the reasons for committing it. Metro Police officers, in South Africa, do not have the legal authority to imprison people, so when they make an arrest, the person in question is handed over to the SAPS for investigation and detainment.
Now that you know more about what police jobs involve, we are going to go into more depth on what kinds of SAPS careers one can apply for and what the procedures are on applying for South African Police Service vacancies.
Requirements of a person who wishes to join the SAPS
There are many requirements that must be met in order for an individual to be eligible to apply for SAPS careers. Here is the full list as laid down by the SAPS. According to the SAPS, you need to:
• Be a South African citizen by birth
• Be at least 25, but under 40 years of age, of which documentary proof must be furnished
• Complete a health questionnaire, at his or her own cost, which is confirmed by a registered medical practitioner
• Be medically, mentally and physically fit to perform duties
• Be of good and sound character
• Fit the psychometric profile and must successfully complete any other test that may be determined by the National Commissioner
• Be in possession of at least a senior certificate (Grade 12) or must have successfully completed a SAQA accredited NQF level 4 qualification, of which documentary proof must be provided
• Be able to speak, read and write at least two official languages, of which one must be English
• Allow his or her fingerprints and a DNA sample to be taken
• Be prepared to undergo such training as may be determined by the National Commissioner
• Be prepared to take the prescribed oath of office
• Understand that his or her services may be terminated at the age of 60
• Complete an assessment questionnaire
• Be vetted or screened
• Be employed and provide proof of employment
• Provide proof of his or her residential address
• Not have a criminal record or any criminal or departmental cases pending against him or her (all criminal or departmental cases must be declared)
• Not have a tattoo which will be visible if the person wears a uniform
**South African Police Service, What are the requirements for appointment? Source: http://www.saps.gov.za/services/reservist.php**
How does a person apply for SAPS careers?
Everyone who meets the requirements, as stated above, who wish to apply for SAPS careers, will have to participate in an in-depth training course. First you need to fill in the SAPS application forms, then you go on six months of intense practical training. This training normally takes place at several police stations around the area of the training college that you enroll at. After you have completed the practical course, you then have to undergo six months of theory training. This is where you will be learning the rules and regulations that surround the work, and also the law. The theory course is where you will learn what you can and cannot do as a police officer, and how to execute your functions to the standards that are required.
Once you have passed both these courses, you can become a serving police officer. Besides the basic training, there are other training opportunities that will become available. These last for a set number of days and focus on a wide range of specialized areas. For example, you could learn about animal behavior, fingerprinting, and firearms etc.
What SAPS careers are available?
The starting South African police service vacancies position, once you have successfully completed the training, is the Police Constable. You will start off in this position and if you perform well in this position then you will be legible for advancement.
A police sergeant is the next level from a constable. You will have more responsibility as you will be managing a police station. More responsibilities mean more pay, but it means that you have to answer for any shortfalls in your station. You will be responsible for delegating tasks and managing relationships within the police station.
If you do very well as a constable and show that you have analytic or good deduction abilities, then you might be promoted to becoming a detective. Your job will be to investigate crimes and find suspects who could have committed these crimes. The SAPS has many different areas that they concentrate on, such as organised crime or violent crime. Depending on the area you are assigned to, your duties might change.
There are roles in the police department that can be performed by people who are not actual police officers. In a civilian capacity, you can still work with the South African Police Service. You might help them out with career or strategic management. You might have to assists in marketing for the organization or advertising for Police run community initiatives. There are a lot of functions that need to be performed for the SAPS that police officers will not be able to do themselves.
So if you think that SAPS careers are for you, then register your CV on Job Mail today and start applying for South African police service vacancies – from traffic police jobs to metro police jobs, you will find it on www.JobMail.co.za.
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