Office woes for police brass

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Office woes for police brass

The evacuation of the South African Police Service’s (SAPS) Pretoria headquarters due to
hazardous conditions will not impact core police operations, officials say.

Police spokesperson Athlenda Mathe stated that arrangements are underway to relocate
affected administrative staff to alternative premises after the building was declared unsafe
for occupation.

The evacuation came amid complaints from employees about a lack of clean drinking water,
poor ventilation, missing emergency exits, and unhygienic conditions.

Trade union Solidarity said the building failed to obtain necessary fire safety certificates
permitting occupation.

“The SAPS head office may only reopen its doors after the certificate has been issued and
an inspection by the fire brigade has been carried out,” the union stated.

Solidarity added that workers reported illnesses potentially from dirty offices, poor air quality,
and cockroach and lice infestations.

But Mathe asserted that the affected staff provide administrative support and that their
relocation will not disrupt core police functions.

“The SAPS is in continuous engagements with the Department of Public Works and
Infrastructure, whose responsibility is the repair and maintenance of state facilities,” she

The evacuation highlights serious lapses in providing safe and clean working conditions for
police employees.

While operations remain unaffected for now, the impact on worker productivity and morale
could be significant if problems persist.

With staff reporting health issues, it is untenable for SAPS leadership to inhabit a building
that disregards basic occupational health standards.

Urgent action is required to rectify the situation and provide personnel with facilities befitting
their role as public servants. Anything less shows disregard for the wellbeing of police staff.

As Solidarity stated, safety certificates must be secured and thorough inspections conducted
before re-occupation.

SAPS management must also review maintenance and cleaning contracts to prevent any

The Pretoria headquarters debacle underlines that dutiful police members deserve a clean,
safe work environment. Leadership must guarantee this.