After the Commandos The Future of Rural Policing in South Africa

"In February 2003, President Thabo Mbeki announced that the South African National Defence Force’s (SANDF) Territorial Reserve, popularly known as the Commandos, would be phased out. This phasing out process is now well underway. By the end of 2009, the last of South Africa’s 183 Commandos will have ceased operating, their rural crime prevention and borderline control functions taken over by the South African Police Service(SAPS). The task of this monograph is to assess the rural safety capacity that will be lost with the closing of the Commandos, and to discuss the manner in which the SAPS will replace that capacity. To this end, we conducted fieldwork in the three Commando jurisdictions: Ladybrand in the eastern Free State, De Mist in Eastern Cape, and West Rand and Gatsrand Commando areas in Gauteng."