The Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) has established a Tactical Response Unit (TRU) dedicated to fighting crime with a proactive approach.
The JMPD’s TRU aims to collaborate with the South African Police Service (SAPS) as a force multiplier, focusing on preventing and combating crime in Johannesburg. The launch event, held on Friday, 10 November at the Moletsane Sport Complex in Soweto, was attended by the Executive Mayor, Kabelo Gwamanda, City Manager Floyd Brink, and the MMC for Public Safety, Cllr Mgcini Tshwaku.
It featured entertainment from the JMPD choir, drill squad, and a marching parade, creating a sense of unity and purpose.
Cllr Tshwaku was delighted that the community’s desire for a tactical response unit had been realised, pledging a robust response to criminal activities.
“We are going to fight crime fire by fire. Our people are getting killed daily, and we shall respond. Any criminal pointing a gun at a police officer or community member will be met with a shoot-to-kill approach,” Cllr Tshwaku says.
Superintendent Xolani Fihla, JMPD Spokesperson, notes that the unit will focus on serious crimes such as kidnapping, cash and transit heists, illegal mining, and other issues plaguing the City.
“This unit will make a great difference in fighting crime,” Fihla adds. The introduction of the JMPD Motorway Patrol Fleet was also announced, intended for daily patrols and service delivery-related policing work. This move marks a significant step as the JMPD establishes a crime-combating directorate, demonstrating its commitment to enforcing traffic laws, municipal bylaws, and preventing crimes.
The TRU will conduct daily searches, visible policing, community interactions, crime analysis, and address issues related to domestic violence, women, children, and the elderly.
The unit’s responsibilities extend to handling special operations, including responses to information from the crime-prevention unit, addressing business robberies, hijackings and activities related to illegal mining (zama-zamas). The launch event concluded with a performance by the JMPD drill squad, symbolising their dedication to maintaining order and safety in the city.