The Mpumalanga Department of Community Safety, Security and Liaison plans to build a traffic training college in the province that would not only skill metro police officers but also save millions of rands. The province spent over R6 million in the last financial year sending metro police recruits to Limpopo, Gauteng and Free State for training.
“The existence of the college will help the province save money in the long term because once it is functional, traffic management trainees will no longer be sent outside the province,” said MEC for Community Safety, Security and Liaison Vusi Shongwe.
Local communities are also expected to benefi from the jobs created during the construction of the college and the opportunities that arise once it opens its doors, the MEC added.
During his Budget Speech last year, Shongwe said the designs and plans for the college had been completed and R25 million had been allocated for the construction.
The traffic college, which will be located at Mkhuhlu in the Bushbuckridge Local Municipality, will be built in phases with the first phase expected to be completed over the next two years.
Once finished the training college will accommodate 150 recruits and will play a role in reskilling older employees.
Every traffic officer has to undergo training related to firearm handling at least twice a year. The road traffic legislation is frequently amended and traffic officials always need to be updated.
The Mpumalanga Department of Community Safety, Security and Liaison currently has 745 traffic officers.
The department recently held a sod-turning ceremony at the traffic training college.
At that event, MEC Shongwe called on the Bushbuckridge community to look after the college and not vandalise it once it was completed.