Presentation on Policing of the FIFA World Cup in Brazil - 2 Oct 2012

  • By Press Release
  • 02 Oct, 2012

SOUTH AFRICAN POLICING UNION (SAPU): PRESENTATION AT AN INTERNATIONAL MEETING OF POLICE UNIONS IN BRAZIL ON 10 OCTOBER 2012 ON THEIR EXPERIENCE OF THE POLICING OF THE FIFA WORLD CUP IN 2010 IN SOUTH AFRICA AND ON THE ROLE OF THE UNIONS

Introduction

SAPU president, Mr Mpho Kwinika, was invited by the Brazilian Confederation of Police to attend an international meeting of police unions from countries that previously hosted soccer world cup events. The purpose of the meeting is to learn from the experience of other police agencies and police unions.

The South African Police Service (SAPS) and consequently also the police unions were faced with similar challenges when FIFA, in 2004, announced that South Africa would host the Soccer World Cup in 2010. The security establishment in South Africa, in particular the police, were faced with the daunting responsibility to develop, resource and implement a security operation that would ensure the safety of everyone during this four-week event. The announcement came at a time when crime in South Africa, and in particular violent crime, had just peaked at its highest levels. However, over the next few years until 2009, the year immediately before the World Cup, overall crime rates slowly decreased to a level approximately 24% below that of 2003. Violent crimes, however, such as house robbery, business robberies and vehicle hijackings started to increase at an alarming rate. For example house robberies increased by 100% and business robberies by almost 300% from 2004/05 and 2008/09. Moreover, the national victim surveys, conducted between 1998 and 2007, showed a 148% increase in the number of people who indicated that they felt unsafe walking in their own areas after dark.

In addition to the obvious crime threat, the run-up to the tournament also saw a renewed fear of terrorism and its potential destructive impact on the World Cup. It was generally recognised that the terror threat was not so much against South Africa as it was against the event and in particular against countries involved or associated with the war (at the time) in Iraq. Some of the concern was prompted by the attack on the bus carrying the Togo national soccer team during the Africa Cup of Nations in January 2010, and the arrest in May of a Saudi army officer with links to al-Qaeda in connection with an alleged plot to launch attacks during the World Cup against teams from countries that supported the war in Iraq. In a briefing to the United States Congress Counter-Terrorism caucus, also during May, the bold statement was made that there was an 80% chance of such a terror attack happening during the World Cup in South Africa.

This was the biggest event ever hosted in South Africa and also the biggest security challenge for the SAPS amidst its already taxing crime fighting responsibilities. It was going to be only a month-long event – but planning had to take into account the securing and holding period immediately before the start of the World Cup and the mopping-up immediately after the event. The police and other security structures knew that it would be an intense period for policing and security, and given that the eyes of the world would be focused on South Africa, excellent planning, preparation and execution would be required. The additional burden of the 2010 security operation would have to be carried primarily by members of SAPS and it was the responsibility of unions such as SAPU to ensure both that the police performed their constitutional obligations diligently and efficiently and that the rights of their members were at all times respected and their grievances attended to.

The challenge for SAPU and other unions therefore was how best to serve the interests of its members and at the same time honouring the basic values and obligations for policing enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa. This presentation, therefore, aims to highlight some of the main aspects of the overall security operation, and also some of the pertinent implications this has had for members of SAPS and how SAPU, as the leading police union, was able to ensure that the rights of its members were upheld.

The 2010 FIFA World Cup Security Operation

As is the case for all major events, the SAPS was the lead organisation for this tournament and planning started immediately after FIFA’s May 2004 announcement that South Africa would host the 2010 event. The SAPS applied the tried-and-tested operational coordinating structures and concepts that had proved effective during past large-scale events such as the 2000 Olympic Games in Athens and the previous FIFA World Cup tournaments held in 2002 and 2006.

At the heart of the security operation was the multi-departmental National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (JOINTS), which worked closely with the Security Directorate of the FIFA Local Organising Committee (LOC) responsible for specific event security requirements. In 2004 the JOINTS set up a dedicated Planning Committee for the development of a joint and integrated security plan for the World Cup. The Planning Committee was chaired by the Deputy National Commissioner for Operational Services in the South African Police Service (SAPS) and conducted regular planning meetings with the LOC to integrate their plans and to ensure role clarification.

Because of the size and the international nature of the World Cup, the JOINTS also liaised with a range of regional and international police and intelligence structures. These structures included:

  • the International Police Cooperation Centre (IPCC), representative of 225 police officials from 28 participating countries who played a primarily advisory role,
  • the Intelligence Coordinating Committee (ICC) that also involved foreign intelligence agencies,
  • the Interpol’s Major Events Support Team (IMEST) that provided expertise in terms of, for example, Technological Passports Control Mobile Units, and
  • the Southern African Regional Police Chiefs Cooperation Organisation (SARPCCO) that was tasked with the coordination of movement in relation to,   inter   alia,   high profile persons, tourists and spectators.

When the security plan was put into action during the beginning of June 2010, the JOINTS planning structures were all similarly re-organised into an intricate system of operational committees known, at the highest decision level, as the National Joint Operational Committee (NatJOCOM), and at the execution levels as the National Joint Operational Centre (NatJOC), the Provincial Joint Operational Centres (ProvJOCs) and Venue Operational Centres (VOCs). VOCs were set up at each of the stadiums during match days, as well as at team hotels and other localised venues identified for this purpose.

Because of the size and the international nature of the event, the JOINTS also liaised with a range of regional and international police and intelligence structures to gain their support and cooperation. This cooperation and support became visible during the implementation phase when a number of international cooperative structures were established and linked to the JOINTS structures.

The SAPS were allocated an impressive R1.3 billion ($158 million USD) budget for this event. Fifty one percent or R665 million ($81 million) was spent on equipment and the rest, R640 million, for staff deployment. The SAPS had also raised its staff levels by over 60 000 members in the decade preceding the event. This resulted in the SAPS having a staff complement of around 195 000 employees with a police-to-public ratio of almost 3 to 1 000. This ratio compares favourably with the international average of 2 to 1 000. In addition, the SAPS sent senior members to attend big events elsewhere, notably the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, where they were able to work with local authorities and gain valuable lessons and experience.

In addition to the various types of specialised teams deployed for all kinds of contingencies, the SAPS appointed dedicated task teams in each of the ten host cities to investigate event-related crimes and bring them before dedicated World Cup courts as speedily as possible. The Department of Justice also established 56 special courts to deal with offences related to the World Cup. These included offences:

  • Committed by non-residents in the country for the World Cup;
  • Committed against non-residents in the country for the World Cup;
  • Which involved non-residents as witnesses; or
  • Committed at places recognised as tourist attractions or at any place in the country which, in the opinion of the Senior Public Prosecutor could be classified as a World Cup-related offence.

The combination of special investigative teams and special courts appeared to be highly effective. In the end, 222 of the 704 crimes committed outside the stadiums and the 290 committed inside the stadiums resulted in criminal trials. At the end of the tournament, there were 138 convictions, 12 acquittals and 52 cases withdrawn, and by the beginning of August 2010, immediately after the World Cup event, only 20 cases were still outstanding. The apparent success of this system had a reassuring impact on South Africans and visitors alike and according to some indicators also a positive impact on crime. For example, ADT, a private security company, said that the crimes usually reported to it were down by 70% in the west of Johannesburg and 60% in the east during the World Cup.

There were also many lessons learnt from the World Cup such as the obvious weaknesses in the process of selecting, contracting and deploying private security companies by the FIFA Local Organising Committee. This resulted in strikes by private security officials at four of the ten stadiums and added to the burden of an already stretched police service. It required of the police to bring in additional members, including large numbers of police trainees from training colleges, to replace them, with obvious overtime remuneration costs and other implications.

The strikes notwithstanding, the end result was a successful World Cup event with low levels of mostly petty crimes such as theft, and no serious security incidents. The success of the event was summed up by a spokesperson of the US State Department, quoted in a Sport24 report on 13 July, who remarked that   “[i]t was the first time an African nation hosted the World Cup,  and South Africa proved its ability to do so quite nobly.”

The Role of the Police Unions

Brief background

With an operation of this kind and size and over such a long period challenges to the rights and interests of police members are almost inevitable. Everybody is under pressure to ensure the success of the event, and with the high levels of crime in South Africa at the time of the FIFA World Cup in 2010, this was particularly true for the security establishment. The security plan for this event provided,   inter alia,   for an estimated 500 000 foreign visitors to South Africa inclusive of 32 participating teams, officials and other staff, supporters and spectators, the media and tourists. This is a huge responsibility all on its own, but to add to this the plan also had to provide for the safety needs of South Africans in general. The latter was especially important after accusations during previous international events that the police were more concerned with the safety of visitors than with those of fellow South Africans.

As a consequence of this ‘lesson learnt’ from past major events, the security plan for the 2010 event provided for the deployment of security personnel in such a way that general policing would not be compromised. In this regard it is worth mentioning that 82% (or 41 000) of the approximate total of 50 000 members of the state’s security services deployed for the Soccer World Cup, came from the SAPS. The remainder were representative of the Metro Police Services, the South African National Defence Force (SANDF), the Intelligence community and the Disaster Management Centre. In addition to this, private security officials were also deployed for ‘inner-perimeter’ duties.

It is obvious that with this this kind of deployment there was bound to be tensions between employees and employers and even between employees themselves. For example, already during the planning phase it became apparent that there would be tension between members for event related deployment with its specific responsibilities and additional remuneration benefits and members performing general policing responsibilities. These and many other concerns clearly required the attention of the police unions and the most obvious approach was to set a standard procedure for resolving such disputes through a process of collective bargaining in the Safety and Security Sectoral Bargaining Council (SSSBC).

The SSSBC special events agreement

The SSSBC was established in South Africa in 1998 as the authoritative mechanism for collective bargaining between the state as employer and its employees in the South African Police Service. It was set up in terms of the South African Labour Relations Act   of 1995 with powers and functions to negotiate collective agreements on matters of mutual interest and to ensure the implementation of such agreements. The SSSBC is also empowered to resolve disputes between the employer and trade unions (admitted to it), and the employer and its employees. Apart from the SAPU the only other (‘admitted’) union representing SAPS employees in the SSSBC is POPCRU (Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union).

In 2009 the SSSBC approved an agreement on a Special Daily Overtime Allowance for Policing Duties at Special Events (Agreement No 4 of 2009). According to paragraph 2 of this agreement the allowance has to be revised every year and a new agreement entered into. During March 2010 SAPS operational commanders involved in the planning of the security operation for the FIFA World Cup was asked to brief the SSSBC on the plan and, amongst others, its personnel requirements. This was followed by further deliberations and eventually, on 17 May 2010, by a new SSSBC agreement, Agreement No 1 of 2010.

In terms of SSSBC Agreement 1/2010, it was agreed that an employee assigned to render duties at a special event designated by SAPS National Head Office would receive a non-pensionable daily subsistence allowance of R85-00, increased from R80-00 in the 2009 agreement, if he or she is required to reside in accommodation at the special event. The employee would also receive a converted non-pensionable special daily overtime allowance of R700-00, increased from R560-00 in the 2009 agreement, regardless of the number of hours of overtime duty performed, provided that the maximum hours of work performed on a particular day may not exceed 18 hours.

The accommodation and meal allowance provisions remained unchanged. If an employee was required to reside in accommodation at the special event, the SAPS had to provide the accommodation. If meals were not provided to an employee deployed away from his or her normal workplace from before 05:00 and after 20:00, an amount of R130-00 per day had to be paid to the employee for meals. The agreement was applicable to all employees appointed in terms of the South African Police Service Act, 1995   and the   Public Service Act, 1994 , but excluded employees appointed to the senior management of the SAPS. Although not included in Agreement 1/2010, it was also agreed that police members performing duties not directly linked to the event would receive ordinary overtime remuneration where that was applicable.

However, whereas SSSBC Agreement 1/2010 provided a solid platform from which to manage all employer-employee related obstacles arising from the policing of the World Cup, more was needed to ensure a hands on approach to the implementation of the Agreement and to deal with various kinds of disputes that arose throughout the operation.

The SSSBC Oversight Task Team (OTT)

Following the adoption of Agreement 1/2010 it was further agreed in the SSSBC to establish an Oversight Task Team (OTT) to oversee the implementation of the agreement and to address any possible problems that may arise during the operation. The OTT contained representatives of the two police unions and senior members of the SAPS. The SAPS were represented by a member of the National Joint Operations Centre (NATJOC), and senior members from SAPS Finance and Logistics (Supply Chain Management).

The OTT was chaired by a member of the SSSBC who also provided for a staff member to act as secretary for purposes of record keeping. They visited the nine Provinces where they briefed police members on the content of the agreement and also explained the process of reporting any problem situations such as transport, accommodation and placement. The OTT also had the responsibility to ensure that members were not unreasonable in their demands.

For purposes of enabling the OTT to be efficient and effective in how they executed their responsibilities they maintained a 24-hour standby service.

The OTT had executive authority and was able to make immediate decisions and to act upon them in a way that avoided undue delays and frustration. A good example is the hiring of transport for members where the ‘normal’ procedures would not have allowed for the timely transport of members to a particular venue. To avert further tensions and conflict in relation to overtime payment between members deployed for the World Cup and members performing ordinary policing duties, it was agreed that for the duration of the operation everybody would receive the same overtime payment.

Having an oversight task team with decision making authority and having representatives of both the employer and the unions on the task team should be considered one of the success factors of the FIFA World Cup, at least from a security point of view. It allowed for immediate resolution of problems and potential labour frustration and conflict, and contributed to a sense of employee satisfaction and subsequent high levels of morale. The only weakness was the fact that the OTT remained a centralised body and became overstretched in its efforts to address problems and complaints in various parts of the country. This was a valuable lesson and in future events of this size serious consideration will have to be given to decentralised OTT’s.

Conclusion

The FIFA World Cup in South Africa in 2010 was an internationally acknowledged success. The contribution to the success of this event of a well-planned and efficiently implemented security operation should not be underestimated. In this process the unions played a pivotal role and while they ensured that the interests of their members were served, they also contributed to the efficient and effective implementation of the most comprehensive security operation in the history of South Africa since the two World Wars.
By Press Release 19 Dec, 2012

Programme Director, organisers of this conference, distinguish guests, ladies and gentlemen, thank you very much for inviting my organisation, the South Africa Policing Union (SAPU) to attend and share with all of you our experience and our role as a workers organisation in improving service delivery in the public service. As already been mentioned in the introduction, my name is Thabo Matsose and I am 2nd   Vice president at SAPU.

We are indeed privileged to have been invited and as such we are happy to contribute ideas through this presentation. This is a very important topic for our organisation and our work in the past few years has been aimed at looking at ways of improving the delivery of public services. As such we have formed strategic partnerships with progressive civil society formations and community based structures to champion this cause. We have for example partnered with Community Police forums precisely to look at ways of strengthening the delivery of policing services to community.

Our own experience and the experiences of many often ordinary people indicate to us that a lot of improvement is required in delivering quality public services to the public. Unlike wealthy people who often opt to access services provided by private service providers ordinary people do not enjoy that privilege. Ordinary people rely heavily virtually on services provided by public institutions such as for example, health care services and security services. Privileged people often opt for services provided by private service providers because either of poor public services or at worst lack of services.

By Press Release 17 Oct, 2012
Marikana: Conceived, Born in Violence

Surely, the most surprising aspect of the tragic events at the Marikana mine – where a total of 44 mine workers and members of the police lost their lives – is that everyone was so surprised that it had happened.

We are rightly shocked, but should have expected such an event for a long time already. In the past, we put up with lawlessness, violence and intimidation to such an extent that they have become part of the culture in which we address our differences in public.

We should also not be surprised that political vultures such as Julius Malema are cynically using the death of mine workers and the suffering of their next of kin to promote political ambitions.

Labour and wage disputes hardly ever occur without lawlessness, violence or intimidation.

The same holds true for protests against poor service delivery or opportunistic protests, such as those of the ANC Youth league in the Western Cape at the moment.

There have been violent strikes by health workers, municipal officials and security guards. A noteworthy exception was the protest against urban toll roads in Gauteng.  During the strike by security guards, about 60 people – more than at Marikana – were thrown to their death from trains and the like.

But what were the consequences? No-one was prosecuted. And there is scarcely any significant political leadership to put a stop to violence as a means of bargaining in our democracy.

For that matter, if all contributing causes of violence were examined, President Jacob Zuma’s “give me my machine gun” and Malema’s “we’ll kill for Zuma” would indeed have to be scrutinised as contributing factors to a culture of violence.

It is hardly worth debating that such language use cannot be conducive to a public culture of responsible, disciplined and peaceful withholding of labour as an expression of worker power.

In short, for a complete picture, the Farlam commission, which is investigating the causes of the Marikana tragedy, actually also has to focus on background factors – such as violent speech and lack of action against transgression of the law, and violence – which contribute to the creation of a social climate in which intimidation and violent protest flourish.

This is in addition to more obvious contributing factors, such as the inadequacy of bargaining structures and courts created to address labour disputes; desperate living and work conditions; politicking among unions; the strategies and practices of mine management; migrant labour; sangomas; and poverty and low wages.

Three aspects of this culture in which differences are handled and “solved” violently in the public deserve mention.

Respect for the law: Firstly, it is apparently of little consequence whether a protest or strike is legal or illegal. The DA holds a legal protest in the streets of Johannesburg against the delay in implementation of a youth wage subsidy, but it is violently broken up by an illegal counter protest by members of the ruling alliance.

The official reaction was unprincipled. During the violence and thereafter, there was no action against transgressors, although they could easily be identified.

Nursing staff who chose to look after helpless patients (some of whom actually died as a result of the strike) instead of striking are assaulted and humiliated. Assault is a transgression of the law, but is not punished.

This makes lawlessness during the next strike all the easier, since you know you can get away with it. When the strike against urban toll roads in Gauteng happens peacefully, everyone is surprised, precisely because it goes against the norm. 

Respect for authority: Secondly, a disconcerting characteristic of our society is the ease with which the police are regarded as fair game to be assaulted and killed. Murder of a member of the police force is a crime not just against the person, but also against the authority of the state, symbolised by the wearing of a uniform.

It is for that reason that murder of a member of the police force is viewed in a much more serious light in countries such as the USA and Britain. We can indeed try to look for explanations for this in the history of the apartheid police 20 and more years ago, but it cannot serve as a justification. 

And naturally it does not help much if members of the police themselves transgress the law, by amongst others torturing detainees, or when heads of police occupy prison cells. But if a police member, and thus a representative of the authority of the state, orders a protester to make way or not to cross a picket line, the order must be obeyed. That distinguishes a democracy from anarchy. 

Leadership: Thirdly, there is little, if any, evidence of decisive and consistent leadership by politicians and union leaders in order to promote respect for the law and the authority of the state.

On the contrary, to give but one example, a recognised leader such as Winnie Madikizela- Mandela sends out the message that metro police members who do their work must be suspended because it was her car that was stopped.

There is a direct line of lack of respect for the law and authority to leaders who place votes at Mangaung above right and justice. If keeping quiet serves self-interest, they will keep quiet, even if it cleaves away the corner stones of the rule of law. 

Our leaders do know what is right. It is hoped that the Farlam commission will publicly remind the government, unions and mining companies of their responsibilities.
By Press Release 16 Oct, 2012
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By Press Release 02 Oct, 2012

SAPU president, Mr Mpho Kwinika, was invited by the Brazilian Confederation of Police to attend an international meeting of police unions from countries that previously hosted soccer world cup events. The purpose of the meeting is to learn from the experience of other police agencies and police unions.

The South African Police Service (SAPS) and consequently also the police unions were faced with similar challenges when FIFA, in 2004, announced that South Africa would host the Soccer World Cup in 2010. The security establishment in South Africa, in particular the police, were faced with the daunting responsibility to develop, resource and implement a security operation that would ensure the safety of everyone during this four-week event. The announcement came at a time when crime in South Africa, and in particular violent crime, had just peaked at its highest levels. However, over the next few years until 2009, the year immediately before the World Cup, overall crime rates slowly decreased to a level approximately 24% below that of 2003. Violent crimes, however, such as house robbery, business robberies and vehicle hijackings started to increase at an alarming rate. For example house robberies increased by 100% and business robberies by almost 300% from 2004/05 and 2008/09. Moreover, the national victim surveys, conducted between 1998 and 2007, showed a 148% increase in the number of people who indicated that they felt unsafe walking in their own areas after dark.

In addition to the obvious crime threat, the run-up to the tournament also saw a renewed fear of terrorism and its potential destructive impact on the World Cup. It was generally recognised that the terror threat was not so much against South Africa as it was against the event and in particular against countries involved or associated with the war (at the time) in Iraq. Some of the concern was prompted by the attack on the bus carrying the Togo national soccer team during the Africa Cup of Nations in January 2010, and the arrest in May of a Saudi army officer with links to al-Qaeda in connection with an alleged plot to launch attacks during the World Cup against teams from countries that supported the war in Iraq. In a briefing to the United States Congress Counter-Terrorism caucus, also during May, the bold statement was made that there was an 80% chance of such a terror attack happening during the World Cup in South Africa.

This was the biggest event ever hosted in South Africa and also the biggest security challenge for the SAPS amidst its already taxing crime fighting responsibilities. It was going to be only a month-long event – but planning had to take into account the securing and holding period immediately before the start of the World Cup and the mopping-up immediately after the event. The police and other security structures knew that it would be an intense period for policing and security, and given that the eyes of the world would be focused on South Africa, excellent planning, preparation and execution would be required. The additional burden of the 2010 security operation would have to be carried primarily by members of SAPS and it was the responsibility of unions such as SAPU to ensure both that the police performed their constitutional obligations diligently and efficiently and that the rights of their members were at all times respected and their grievances attended to.

The challenge for SAPU and other unions therefore was how best to serve the interests of its members and at the same time honouring the basic values and obligations for policing enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa. This presentation, therefore, aims to highlight some of the main aspects of the overall security operation, and also some of the pertinent implications this has had for members of SAPS and how SAPU, as the leading police union, was able to ensure that the rights of its members were upheld.

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