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Building managerial capacity in the SAPS through professional development

"Training, skills development and education remain key objectives if we are to remain relevant to police in a democratic dispensation."
Building managerial capacity in the SAPS through professional development

Delegates on the Public Management Development Programme (PMDP) from the South African Police Service (SAPS) who attended their certificate ceremony on Wednesday, 29 July 2015. Front row (FLTR): Mr Deon Herbst (CEO: CE at UP), Prof Carolina Koornhorf (Executive Director: Finance and Business Initiatives, UP and Trustee: CE at UP), Mr Patrick de Bouck (Deputy Head of Mission, Embassy of Belgium), Lt Gen Nombulela Mbekela (Deputy-National Commissioner: SAPS), Gen Riah Phiyega (National Commissioner: SAPS), Prof Margaret Chitiga-Mabungu (HoD and Director: School of Public Management and Administration, UP), Prof David Fourie (course leader), Ms Judith Louw (facilitator), Dr Johan Jordaan (facilitator), SAPS delegate, Mr Basson Geldenhuys (moderator), Ms Estelle Viviers (Manager: Client-Specific Programmes, CE at UP).

Commending delegates on completing the Public Management Development Programme (PMDP), General Riah Phiyega, National Commissioner of the South African Police Service (SAPS), addressed guests and members of the national Police Service at a certificate ceremony on Wednesday, 29 July 2015 on the Groenkloof Campus of the University of Pretoria (UP).

"If we [the SAPS] are to live up to the expectations of our Constitution and changes articulated in the NDP [National Development Plan], we must align ourselves accordingly, and education is the cornerstone of that much-needed alignment," she added as key note speaker at the event.

Fifty-six commanders in the SAPS successfully completed the PMDP presented by Continuing Education at University of Pretoria (CE at UP) and the School of Public Management and Administration during the course of 2014. The training was conducted in line with the SAPS underwriting Vision 2030 stipulated in the NDP, in order to empower its public service officials in performing their duties more professionally, while also meeting the developmental needs of an ever-changing society.

Training on the programme has been sponsored by the Belgian Development Agency (BTC), under the auspices of a long-established training and development partnership with the SAPS that started in 1995.

Emphasising the importance of leaders to go out in the world and use the knowledge they have gained, General Phiyega encouraged the delegates to employ the knowledge they have gained on the programme to drive the SAPS forward.

"The SAPS trusts that you [the delegates] will not fail in your responsibility to create a living legacy for those still to come. As you create that legacy, remember to inculcate in your colleagues the principles and values that strive to promote integrity and respect for the organisation and the people it is meant to serve."

Building managerial capacity in the SAPS through professional development

National Commissioner, Gen Riah Phiyega, addressing delegates and guests during the certificate ceremony.

With the realisation that government departments require continuous professional development, she also stated that all South Africans have the right and obligation to ascertain whether and to what degree the community's public safety needs are being met.

Brigadier Elizabeth Baby Maaga is one of six delegates who has subsequently decided to complete a Master's degree in Public Administration at the University after completing the PMDP.

"As the SAPS, we are public administrators, so it is important to know how to handle the clients outside in their communities. You learn how important your clients are and how to service them."

She recommended that more of her colleagues take part in the programme, adding that, "It builds you to be able to perform your duties effectively and efficiently." She further said that she believes it important for all public administrators to attend such programmes and learn how to deal with the challenges they may face in the workplace.

The top achieving delegates on the PMDP were also rewarded for their dedication and commitment to self-betterment and driving the vision of the SAPS forward.

"The programme is very important, it builds up an individual and also brings about the sharing of experiences from members of different backgrounds. This helps develop other members to serve the community of South Africa," Major General Risimati Peter Shivuriwas, one of the top achievers, added.

He also stated that it is vital not only to recommend the programme to other people, but also to implement what they have learned from the programme as a collective.

"You cannot do it as one individual, you must work as a team. It is not about one person, it is about all of us, together, making sure that the work is done and South Africa is safe."

Building managerial capacity in the SAPS through professional development

Members of SAPS saluting during a rendition of the National Anthem by the South African Police Service Brass Ensemble.

Higher learning institutions, such as the University, have an immense task to educate public officials, playing a critical role in advancing the vision of stipulated in the NDP that also serves as a road map for government institutions going forward.

General Phiyega added that it is an honour to be among enquiring minds, known as academics, practitioners and professionals of various disciplines, and that the delegates should be proud of being associated with the University.

"This is a day that every [delegate] should treasure ... I, for one, value the role higher academic institutions play to shape the outcome of our society."

Encouraging the delegates to go out and inspire others, she concluded with the motto of what she terms the "Three I's", to inspire, influence and make an impact.

CE at UP and the School of Public Management and Administration presented the Public Management Development Programme to the SAPS as a customised, in-house training solution. The programme equips delegates with the required working knowledge and understanding of major managerial and financial management issues in an effort to effectively carry out their job requirements in pursuit of the vision and mission of their respective institution.

28 Aug 2015 10:45

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