Volume 15, Issue 05

OIDA International Journal of Sustainable Development
Open-access peer-reviewed journal 

Sustainable solutions to the South African police use of force during public gatherings and major events: Undemocratic police under a democratic government

Zephania M. Mkhwanazi 1, Paul O. Bello 2, Dee Khosa 3, Adewale A. Olutola 4
1,2,3,4 Department of Safety & Security Management, Faculty of Humanities
Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria, South Africa.

Volume 15, Issue 05, Pg. 11-22, 2022.

Abstract: This study explored the views and perceptions of South African police officials on the use of excessive force by the South African Police Service (SAPS). Research has shown that for the police to be effective in handling public gatherings, the community is expected to obey the law and the police must enforce the law. Although obedience is expected from members of society towards police officials, disobedience occurs frequently, to the extent that police officers require sufficient skills to manage crowds, especially the disgruntled and the hard to manage. Although many studies abound on police excessive use of force in South Africa, with suggestions and recommendations on how the menace can be curbed, but this unacceptable conduct by the police persist unabated. A plausible reason could be the fact that the focus of most of these studies revolves around public perception or the views of specific segment of the society. However, the accounts of senior police officers – who are experts in the profession, especially those within the specialised units responsible for public order and crowd control management, are often jettisoned. No doubt their views would be valuable for policy intervention, considering their wealth of experience in the profession. Unfortunately, academic writings on this are sparse, hence this contribution of this paper.

From the findings of a doctoral study that was undertaken using the qualitative research method, this study specifically considers the views and perceptions of South African police officials on the use of excessive force in public gatherings and major events. The participants in this study comprised 23 police officers, which included senior and middle management, who ranged from unit section heads, section commanders, unit commanders, policy and standards officers, information officers, to video operators and trainers. The participants were stationed in Gauteng (Pretoria), KwaZulu-Natal, and the Eastern Cape. By using open-ended questions in a structured interview, the researcher increases the chances of obtaining rich and detailed responses that can be used for qualitative analysis. Interview times ranged from 20 to 30 minutes, with a few exceptions with experts in the field going over 50 minutes. An audio recorder was used to record the interviews. To maintain confidentiality, identifiers in the form of dates and numbers were used to code the transcriptions. In other words, the transcriptions bore no names, only numbers and dates. The interviews ceased when data saturation was reached; that is when information was repeated without any new views being presented.

A summary of the key findings indicates that there is complete mistrust by communities in the use of force by the South African police. The findings of the research show that there was a divergence of views regarding the level of trust towards the police among police officials. The use of force by the police is still prevalent in South Africa, and such ruthlessness portend serious threat to law and order in the country. The shortage of police officials in the POP environment has become a huge challenge to dealing with sporadic or unplanned public gatherings that range from service delivery protests to political activities by dissatisfied members of the community. The tendency of authorities to deploy an insufficient number of members or a disproportionate number of members to deal with threat usually contributes to the use of excessive force by members of the police.

Recommendations are made for Public Order Policing (POP) Units and Tactical Response Teams (TRTs) to be capacitated in terms of human and physical resources. A further recommendation is that the SAPS doctrine must guide and support POP in respect of the right to peaceful gatherings. It must be in line with the objective of the crowd management doctrine of the SAPS and be defined in terms of the principles of intervention during crowd management.

Keywords: Democracy, Major events, public gatherings, South African police, Use of force.

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Economic Growth and Circular Economy in the European Union: Novel Empirical Synergy Analyses Between Key Variables of Circular Economy and Gross Domestic Growth (GDP) and Gross National Income (GNI)

Jari Kaivo-oja, Jarmo Vehmas & Jyrki Luukkanen
Finland Futures Research Centre, Turku School of Economics, University of Turku
Åkerlundinkatu 2 A, 4th Floor, 33100 Tampere, Finland.

Volume 15, Issue 05, Pg. 23-36, 2022.

Abstract: Sustainable development has been at the heart of European sustainability policy for a long time, firmly anchored in the European Treaties. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2015, have given a new impetus to global efforts to achieve sustainable development. One key challenge of sustainable development policy is the smart orchestration of the circular economy in relation of economic growth processes. In our current economy, we take materials from the Earth, make products from them, and eventually throw them away as waste – the process is very linear. The linear operating model is also short-term. In a circular economy, by contrast, we stop waste being produced in the first place. We can re-plan, re-use and re-cycle. We may note that it is not possible to reach a sustainable growth process without well-functioning material recycling systems and functions of the circular economy. The well-functioning circular economy is good for business, people and the environment. The circular economy is a systems solution framework that tackles global challenges like climate change, biodiversity loss, waste, and pollution. There are needs and questions to transform every element of our take-make-waste system: (1) how we manage resources, (2) how we make and use products, and (3) what we do with the materials afterwards and (4) how we make trade with recycled materials. Only then when answer to these questions, can we create a thriving circular economy that can benefit everyone within the limits of our planet. Eliminating waste and pollution, circulating materials and products and regenerating nature are key functions of the circular economy. We must admit that waste is a human invention. If we move to a regenerative sustainability model, we begin to emulate natural systems. There is no waste in nature. This is a new invention of the circular economy.

We have seen a lot of discussions about the circular economy, but less attention has been paid to the critical links between the circular economy and economic growth. The study provides an empirical contribution to this research gap. This empirical research can open up new insights and avenues into the development of sustainability science. If policymakers are not aware of the links between the circular economy and economic growth, it will seriously hamper the development of the circular economy in the world. In this sense, research in the field of circular economy is very important and it should be promoted in the world.

The conference paper has a strong focus on the circular economy and changing dynamics of economic growth with key variables of the circular economy (CE). This comprehensive and empirical EU study elaborates following key variables of the circular economy: (1) Material footprint [CEI_PC020], (2) Resource productivity [CEI_PC030], (3) Generation of municipal waste per capita [CEI_PC031], (4) Generation of packaging waste per capita [CEI_PC040], (5) Recycling rate of municipal waste [CEI_WM011], (6) Recycling rate of e-waste [CEI_WM050], (7) Recycling of biowaste [CEI_WM030], (8) Trade in recyclable raw materials, Imports extra-EU27 (from 2020) [CEI_SRM020], (9) Exports extra-EU27 (from 2020) [CEI_SRM020], (10) Private investments, jobs and gross value added related to circular economy sectors  [cei_cie010] and (11) Patents related to recycling and secondary raw materials  [cei_cie020]. These 11 key CE variables are analyzed with synergy analysis method in relation to two key indicators of economic growth, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and Gross National Income (GNI).

The study is based on synergy analysis method, which reveals both positive and negative synergies of key variables, and also growth processes without any synergy. The analysis provides additional strategic information for decision-makers concerning SDGs in the long-run. Presenting regular monitoring tool of progress towards the SDGs in the EU context is essential for this conference paper. The method can be applied also in other global sustainability assessments. The data of study is collected from the Eurostat Circular Economy databases and data set covers years 2000-2020. The indicators of economic growth are from the World Bank Key Indicator database. This 20 years database provides a reliable empirical foundation to analyze interlinkages between economic growth and key variables of the circular economy.

The conference paper reports various interesting empirical findings about the circular economy logic in the European Union. One key finding is that in the European Union the synergy levels between GDP and GNI indicator variables and the key variables of the circular economy are not at the same positive or negative levels, but may differ significantly from each other. This is an interesting finding for the management of economic growth policy in the European Union.

Keywords: Circular economy, economic growth, gross domestic product, gross net income, synergy analysis

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Forensic inquiries: Evidencing the reliability and admissibility of digital communication

Werner Uys1 , Kobus Joubert2
1 Department of Taxation, University of South Africa, South Africa.
2 Department of Auditing, University of South Africa, South Africa.

Volume 15, Issue 05, Pg. 37-48, 2022.

Abstract: This article discusses several requirements for the admissibility and relevance of digital evidence, for the unacquainted forensic investigator, including social media statements, in criminal and civil investigations. Any criminal or civil investigation must not misapply the rules of evidence to deny the admissibility of data messages as digital evidence or electronic communication. According to the Electronic Communications and Transactions (South African) Act, 25 of 2002 (hereinafter “the ECTA”), the relevant and admissible requirements for digital evidence must reflect this purpose. The Cybercrimes (South African) Act, 19 of 2020 (hereinafter “the Cybercrimes Act”) was promulgated with the intention of outlawing the disclosure of information that is detrimental to the cyber environment. A unique law in South Africa, the Protection of Personal Information (South African) Act 4 of 2013 (hereinafter, the “POPI Act”), defines “electronic communication” as “any text, voice, sound, or image message sent over an electronic communications network”. A common-sense approach is often needed for the workings of the machinery of the law and the use of technology. To secure admissible digital evidence, forensic investigators need to understand that different industries require different approaches. The banking industry, for instance, is governed by bank laws, while fraud and tax evasion are governed by tax laws.

Forensic investigators need to be familiar with both the requirements and pitfalls of the legislation above. Particular attention should be paid to how original records or copies of originals must be submitted as digital evidence in court. Furthermore, this study summarizes techniques available to forensic analysts in determining the admissibility and relevance of electronic evidence in the form of emails and text data messages such as Short Message Service (SMS) and WhatsApp. To analyse court rulings on the admissibility of evidence in digital form, which is documented in court cases, a literature review has been conducted, making use of the LexisNexis Electronic database as well as the Southern African Legal Information Institute (hereinafter the SAFLII database), and analysing South African case law as well as research literature available online. In court proceedings, digital evidence is seldom inspected for authenticity. The study shows that the ECTA and the Cybercrimes Act allow for access to data stored in the cloud or even when data breaches are detected. Forensic investigators rarely possess the knowledge or skills required to investigate digital evidence that would be most likely to be admissible as well as having probative value in a trial court. Generally, at the outset of an investigation, forensic investigators or forensic analysts should use the techniques available for generating digital evidence, which is deemed relevant in terms of South African legislation and the common law. This article refers to forensic analysts which include forensic investigators or forensic accountants and refers to electronic or digital evidence used interchangeably for easy identification of relevant concepts. The question is answered whether emails, SMS and social media messages (including WhatsApp) such as tweets will stand up to scrutiny in legal proceedings as admissible electronic evidence.

Keywords: Admissibility, Cybercrimes, Electronic Evidence, Forensic Analyst.

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