The Eastern Cape Star of the Year 2015/2016 shone again at the National Excellence Awards Ceremony – held at Sun City International, Rustenburg in North West on the 27 January 2017. The Eastern Cape duo of Sgt Blundin and Sgt Msindwana scooped the Visible Policing Team of the Year.
Sgt Blundin and Cst Msindwana are a two-man team who performed duties on the same shift for the reporting period. They respond to priority one complaints, crimes in progress and trio crimes in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro. They have effected only arrests for serious crimes [Schedule A] such as Hijacking, House Robberies, Dealing in large amounts of drugs, theft of motor vehicle, possession of unlicensed firearms and armed robberies. In the 2015/2016 financial year, the team effected 211 arrests for serious crimes, recovered 157 motor vehicles and seized 528 kg of dagga, eight packets of Tik and 43 101 Mandrax tablets.
In March 2006, the team was performing crime-prevention duties and it spotted a suspicious-looking vehicle. The driver refused to stop and increased speed. The team gave chase and managed to force the vehicle off the road. When they approached the vehicle, Sgt Blundin noticed five (5) cooler bags in the car. Sgt Blundin started searching the vehicle and the suspect said to him: “You got me”, and he said he would give Sgt Bludin R100 000.00 if would let him go. Cst Blundin refused the offer, proceeded to search the vehicle and opened the cooler bags. The suspect then offered them R150 000.00 in cash. The cooler bags contained 40 plastic packets with 1 000 mandrax tablets with a street value of R3 200 000.00. The suspect was arrested for dealing with drugs, possession of Mandrax and bribing police officers.
The arrest of the criminal and the refusal to accept a bribe of such a large amount clearly indicates to the SAPS management and the community that the team is not corrupt. These members adhere to the SAPS’ Code of Conduct and promote the Vision and Mission of the SAPS.
Sgt Blundin also received the National Commissioner’s Award – the winner is selected at the discretion of the National Commissioner from all Monetary Awards by the National Commissioner. He was also promoted to the rank of a Warrant Officer.
The other members who represented Eastern Cape are;
- Lt Colonel RN Niewoudt: Station Commander of the Zwide SAPS – Visible Policing Employee of the Year (Level 8 – 12).
- Sgt P Kwenene: Serious Crimes Investigation Unit in Mdantsane – Detective Employee of the Year (Level 5 – 7)
- Lt Col Grobler: Team – Provincial Gang Investigation Unit – Detective Team of the Year
- CPAC M Towers: Attached to Mdantsane SAPS – Woman of the Year
The Eastern Cape Provincial Commissioner couldn’t hold her excitement when she congratulated Sgt Blundin and Const Msindwana and all the other nominees who represented Eastern Cape at the national Excellence Awards Ceremony. “This proves once again that the Eastern Cape Police has dedicated and professional police officials who can compete with the best in the country. I am very proud of each of them”, she said this morning.
The Honourable MEC of the Department of Safety and Liaison, Weziwe Tikana express delight at the dedication and commitment of the team in discharging its responsibilities. “I am taking off my hat to the team, for having been exemplary to others, and so which other police officers could imitate and emulate the spirit of this team, in the fight against crime. The winners at the Awards Ceremony have done us proud as this province,” said MEC.