Sweden helped improve South Africa's basic police training
Cooperation between the South African and Swedish police services has helped transform the basic police training to better serve South Africa's young democracy.
The South African Police Service, SAPS, and the Swedish National Police Board have been cooperating since 1999.
One of the most concrete outcomes of the partnership is the revised basic training learning programme for new police officers in South Africa. Among other things, the basic training now includes role-play based on the model used at police academies in Sweden.
The role-play presents trainees with real-life policing in a safe training environment. Scenarios based on actual case studies are enacted in places such as a replica of a bank, a flat, a shop, a shebeen, an informal settlement and a police station.
The mock bank robberies, domestic violence cases, shebeen brawls and servicing of the public in a police station are monitored and filmed. Afterwards the students discuss how the trainees handled the situation.
The programme has been implemented in 11 SAPS basic training institutions around South Africa.
The Swedish police say they have learned as much from their South African colleagues as the other way around, not least in terms of working better with people from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds.
Other priority areas for the partnership are gender equality and labour relations.
Sweden and South Africa are sharing the cost of the programme.
> Read more about Swedish-South African public sector cooperation