The Johannesburg Metropolitan Department has a ‘broken window approach’ of dealing with the small issues of crime alongside the bigger ones. In terms of this philosophy, the prevention of smaller crimes is believed to have a knock-on effect, helping to cut more serious crime.
JMPD manages and coordinates the City of Johannesburg Crime Prevention Strategy which includes,
The Joburg City Safety Strategy aims to define a common approach to dealing with crime, violence and safety and security in Johannesburg. It will be the key programme on safety and security for the City and will be the basis for the programmes of the JMPD and other agencies.
“To ensure a universal sense of safety and security”
“As JMPD, through the formation of partnerships with the broader community, all policing agencies and other forums, create a safe and secure environment for the optimum functioning of all stakeholders within the Johannesburg Metro region by the provision of professional road traffic policing, by-law enforcement and crime prevention services.”
All employees in the department must identify and adhere to the following core values:
(b) Professionalism, honesty and integrity
(c) Accountability and transparency
(e) Service excellence delivered with pride
The JMPD derives its mandate from the South African Police Service Act, 68 of 1995;
(a) traffic policing, subject to any legislation relating to road
(b) the policing of municipal by-laws and regulations which are
the responsibility of the municipality,
(c) the prevention of crime
In addition, the department also provides security services
A resolution was taken in 1999 by the City of Johannesburg to establish a Metropolitan Police Department and to outsource Metropolitan Security Services.
Public Safety was tasked to establish a Task Team for the establishment of the Metropolitan Department. The key departments were:
• Metropolitan Traffic Management Services
• Metropolitan Security Services
The rationale behind the establishment of JMPD within the City were:
• High levels of crime and grime
• Lack of confidence in policing
A submission was made to the Provincial Legislature’s MEC for Community Safety in 2000 for the approval of the establishment of the Metropolitan Traffic Department and the application was successful.
Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) was established and launched on the 31st March 2001. The Chief of Police Mzwandile Chris Ngcobo was appointed on the date of the launch.
JMPD was officially established through the integration of the various traffic departments and security services within the Greater Johannesburg Municipal Council, consisting of Soweto, Roodepoort, Midrand, Randburg, Sandton and Johannesburg. To implement the City’s resolution, Metropolitan Police bridging course was done under the South African Police Services (SAPS) auspices.
The department is accountable to the City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality, as per the South African Police Service Act, 1995 (Act 68 of 1995).
The SAPS Amendment Act No. 83 of 1998, accorded municipal police organisation three core functions namely:
• Traffic Policing
• By-Laws Enforcement
JMPD was the first Metropolitan Police Department in the new political dispensation in the country.
RESPONSIBILITY AND STRUCTURE
The JMPD’s mandate is derived from the South African Police Service Amendment Act 83 of 1998. The department’s functions include traffic policing, policing of municipality by laws and regulations and prevention of crime.
The departments is responsible for:
• Co-ordination and development of a prevention strategy for the city
• Development of delivery mechanisms and systems for crime prevention and by-law enforcement
• Guidance, operation and maintenance of an efficient and effective metropolitan police service.
It has seven regional officers, precincts in each region and sectors within those precincts.
The department believes that visible policing is an important prevention strategy. It has about 2300 operational staff members, both uniformed and civilians, drawn from the traffic departments, crime prevention and by-law enforcement agencies of the former local councils within the Johannesburg area, who carry out patrol duties.
The department works with a host of other bodies, including the Department of Home Affairs, which handles issues regarding illegal immigrants, the City’s Health Department which deals with issues of illegal dumping and the South African Police Service.