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By Dimakatso Modipa

The new thirteen members welcome into the Elite special task force unit
The new thirteen members welcome into the Elite special task force unit

“We cannot wait to serve our communities and give our country our best”.

“We want to be seen as super humans and be able to tackle serious and violent crime in our country,”.

These are some of the sentiments that have been shared by two of the thirteen members that recieved their Special Task Force (STF) parachute wings on Thursday, at the Tshwane SAPS Academy in Pretoria.

The Special Task Force is the SAPS elite unit and for one to serve in this unit, the process entails a strict, rigid and stringent fifteen month programme which ensures members are trained to a high level of skill to only respond to high risk incidents.

For the 37th Special Task Force Selection Training Programme (STF), more than 525 members applied to join the elite unit.

150 made it to the five week pre-selection phase while 110 made into the training programme.

Only 13 successfully completed and were welcomed into the STF ranks.

The thirteen members are adding to existing capacity of STF members that attend to high risk and hostage situations, kidnappings, cash-in-transit robberies and illicit mining operations across the country.

An STF Parachute Wing is worn on the left chest and signifies that the member has been trained at a high level of weapon proficiency, hostage release tactics and the ability to deploy operationally by parachute into all territories.

During her keynote address, Lt Gen Mosikili said South Africa needs a Police Service with members that are loyal, disciplined, upright in character, patriotic and willing to serve the country with pride and dignity.

“Best wishes for what lies ahead, and more importantly, on the journey you are about to embark on.

I have no doubt that you are equal to the tasks that you will be required to perform.

All of us have every confidence in you that you will have meaningful and successful careers as STF members,always remember that this is a calling, it’s about passion and commitment to the badge,” said Lt Gen Mosikili.

To join this elite unit, SAPS members must be 32 years and younger and must have served in an operational environment for at least two years.

Members must also have undergone and been successful in the pre-selection phase which consists of various rigorous exercises to determine if the member can endure the STF Selection Training Programme.

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