Police and two prominent churches in the northern areas of Port Elizabeth have signed partnerships aimed at fighting crime, boosting police morale and helping troubled youth.
On Sunday, November 24, an agreement between the SA Police Services and Victory Ministries International (VMI) was signed at an Appreciation Day Service for the SAPS at the VMI Worship Auditorium in Gelvandale. For the first time in the history of SAPS all stations in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro were represented at Police Appreciation Day Service. The formal signing of the partnership cemented the practical partnership that was already established through the “Enough is Enough” campaign against gangsterism and crime in 2010, reports Selwyn Milborrow.
On Tuesday, December 4, local SAPS top brass, representatives of business and of the Ebenezer Centre Church in Algoa Park signed an agreement at the Algoa Park police station, reportsThe Herald. In this initiative, which is driven by Algoa Park station commander Colonel Pumla Mvuka, arrested youth will be counseled by church representatives, police officers will be recognised with floating trophies and church members will visit the station to talk to SAPS members. SAPS officers will also visit the church to brief the congregation. Uitenhage-based car parts manufacturer Faurecia donated the trophies.
The partnerships are in line with previous calls by PE Cluster Commander General Dawie Rabie for churches throughout the metro to partner with their local police station.
Speaking at the Appreciation Day service at VMI Brigadier Shobede-Nkosi from the national office said that she was encouraged by the partnership between SAPS and VMI. “Together we stand against the killing of our policemen and women,” she told the congregation. She challenged the congregation to expose the works of crime in the community and to sound the alarm at evil. “I will not cease to pray for my country,” she concluded.
VMI’s Pastor Jerome Liberty thanked the SAPS for their commitment to the communities and encouraged those who have lost a colleague, friend or relative in the line of duty. The scripture that resonated with his message was: “I will be strong and courageous. I will not be terrified, or discouraged; for the Lord my God is with me wherever I go.” (Joshua 1:9). He urged everyone to have their alarm systems in place. He said that it should not only be their electronic alarms, but their spiritual alarm systems as well. The church has become an agent of change in the city. He encouraged everyone to blow the whistle on crime and not to harbour criminals or buy stolen goods. He concluded the service by praying over each and every policeman and woman. He prayed that the Lord’s favour surround them like a shield in their bold fight against crime. He prayed that generational curses be broken in their lives, no loss of life while on duty, elimination of work related depression, suicidal thoughts, and financial breakthrough in their finances.
At the signing ceremony at Algoa Park police station, Ebenezer Centre’s Pastor Neville Goldman said the church has always been involved in youth development and outreach and the new intiative was firming up their role in assisting the police.
“We as residents and roleplayers need to assist and support the police so that they too have the strength and the drive to help the community,” he said.