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MBABANE – Accumulative losses of approximately over E2 million were incurred as a result of the destruction of homesteads, properties and vehicles of Royal Eswatini Police Service (REPS) officers, since the beginning of April.

According to the REPS’ Performance Report on Recurrent and Capital Expenditure and Other Allied Police Administrative and Operational Activities for the period of April 1 to June 30, 2022, the matter of compensating the officers for the losses suffered is on government’s table and that is covered by law. The compensation of the affected police officers is provided for, in Sections 85 (1) and 86 (1) of the Police Service Act, No. 22 of 2018 which reads: “Police officers whose properties were damaged through acts of sabotage and terrorism are eligible to claim and be compensated for the damaged property at government’s expense.”


The report further states that the period under review also saw the acts of violence, in particular those manifesting through arson attacks, that were being perpetrated around the country, continuing to the detriment of the quest for peace and socio-economic development. “The sporadic arson attacks have affected individuals, businesses as well as the police service in terms of the organisation’s facilities and properties of individual police officers,” the report reads. The police service’s infrastructure that had been destroyed included KaShewula, Luve, Mpaka, Ngculwini, Madlangempisi, Fairview North and Phumulamcashi police posts. Other structures that were torched were Matsapha Police Camp, Malkerns and Lubuli station commanders’ houses.

Meanwhile, the report further stated that activities linked to the civil unrest in the country had taken a new twist and shocking dimension, whereby police officers were targeted by gunmen. It states that there were five cases where police officers were shot, two of which had fatal outcomes that were recorded during the reporting period. Police officers manning the Malagwane Truck Cooling Station were shot at while on duty by unknown gunmen along the Mbabane-Manzini Highway, injuring one officer. Two police officers who were responding to an incident call, were shot at near the Manzini Club and one officer died while the other one sustained serious injuries.

Meanwhile, two more officers were shot at while on their way to attend a road traffic accident, which turned out to be a hoax at Mathangeni in Matsapha. As a result of the shooting, one officer died on the spot while the other sustained serious injuries. In another rare incident, a police officer was shot at while driving from his residential house to the KaPhunga Police Station to collect water. He is currently recovering and under medical supervision. Two police officers who were carrying out their investigative duties in Sithobelweni were shot by unknown gunmen and fortunately, there were no casualties as a result of the incident, according to the report.

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