Trainees at the Castle Inn Resort in Pretoria East are exposed to terrible conditions which compromise their well-being.
Various whistleblowers have reliably informed the DA that the conditions to which trainee wardens are subjected are unacceptable and inhumane.
It is alleged that the aspirant wardens have been subjected to a lack of balanced diet meals, no ablution facilities and trainees are left to sleep outside.
When the DA visited the site, we witnessed mobile toilets being set up though training has been ongoing for four weeks.
This raises questions about what the trainees have been using up to that point and what conditions they have been subjected to for the first part of the training since the start of February.
The DA has further seen photos of chicken and other meat intended for catering purposes left outside in the sun on steel tables for days on end before being used. Again, this is a health risk, as trainees can be subjected to food poisoning.
It remains unclear if the project was budgeted for or how this tender was awarded and advertised, as the budget available is not sufficient to cover the costs of this project.
If the Department of Community Safety and Security intends to mushroom training facilities across the province, it should plan properly and prepare to accommodate aspirant officials.
The lack of attention to health and nutrition regulations can put the lives of trainees at risk and is a violation of their human dignity.
The DA has submitted questions to Gauteng MEC of Community Safety and Security, Faith Mazibuko, to find out whether the correct procurement procedures were followed when this tender was awarded and if the department does regular inspections of training sites.
We will also be submitting additional questions about the credibility of the service providers and if they comply with the various regulations. If this is proven not to be the case, then the DA will write to the treasury for them to be blacklisted.
Community Safety Wardens are supposed to be trained to provide much-needed additional security to our communities. The current conditions impact their dignity negatively and do not nurture the much-needed pride and passion required from these wardens.