President Cyril Ramaphosa says members of the South African Police force must – within the confines of the law – defend their own lives and the lives of law abiding citizens.

During the annual South African Police Service Commemoration Day he said 34 officers have, between 1 April 2020 and 31 March 2021, been killed while on active duty.

Ramaphosa says the fight to curb serious and violent crimes in South Africa should be a collective effort.

Read the President’s full speech here.

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The four constables are accused of demanding money from people, that they accused of breaking the law, in exchange for their freedom.

The constables, aged between 27 and 37, have been the subject of an investigation by the Anti-Corruption Unit since last year.

Following a thorough investigation relating to two cases reported last year and three cases this year, a warrant of arrest was issued for the four, which was executed this morning at the Harare police station where they are based.

The members are expected to make their court appearance in Khayelitsha tomorrow on charges of corruption, theft and robbery.