New top brass at Vryheid SAPS

Bhekuyise (Benjamin) Ndlovu is the new station commander at Vryheid SAPS.

BHEKUYISE (Benjamin) Ndlovu has wanted to be a police officer since childhood.

He observed with admiration how confidently his uncle (a police officer) would pursue the ‘bad guys’, keeping the community safe, marvelled at the purposeful way his uncle lived his life and appreciated how residents in the area respected his uncle for the work that he did.

“Watching my uncle, I knew what I wanted to do with my life. After matriculating at iKhetelo High School in Mondlo, there was never any doubt about what I wanted to do. I headed to the Hammanskraal Police College to begin my training,” says Col Ndlovu.

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Nearly 34 years later, Col Ndlovu has taken over as the station commander at Vryheid SAPS. Working in the economic hub of the cluster means that he must also tackle the highest crime rate in the cluster, but years of experience and a hands-on attitude more than equip him to deal with the challenges that lie ahead.

Col Ndlovu began his career as a police officer on December 8, 1983, when he was stationed in Port Elizabeth to deal with the political unrest.

“It was the most terrible experience of my entire career. Many of my colleagues from college were killed along with members of the community through ‘necklacing’. To necklace a person is to put a tyre around them and then set the tyre on fire,” recalls Col Ndlovu.

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In 1985, Col Ndlovu was transferred to the Newcastle station, where he served as a constable for a year, before he was transferred to the Groenvlei Station.

“I remained at Groenvlei for 16 years and worked my way up to station commander while I was there. It was a quiet place, which gave me the opportunity to study further and obtain a BTech degree. It was at Groenvlei that I met my wife, the mother of my five children,” continues Col Ndlovu.

“In 2001, my wife, who is a teacher by profession, was transferred to a school in Mondlo and I moved to Vryheid as the commander of the Community Service Centre (CSC) in order to remain with my family. I was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel Inspectorate and moved to Ulundi in 2005. Then, when the SAPS restructured, I was sent back to the Vryheid Station as a crime prevention officer under Lt Col Allan Westermeyer.”

Col Ndlovu was approached by Provincial Commissioner, Hamilton Ngidi, to take on the position of station commander at the Paulpietersburg Station in 2005.

“I remained in that position, until I became station commissioner in Vryheid last month,” said Col Ndlovu.

As the head of the Vryheid Station, Col Ndlovu hopes to restore the community’s trust in the police service.

“I want the community to feel safe again. In order to do this, we need all stakeholders to play their part. Please report crime, assist us with information that will lead to arrests being made. My door is always open. I am always there,” he concluded.

Col Ndlovu can be reached on 082 419 8053.

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