Johannesburg – The long weekend stay at Sun City took place last weekend as part of National Police Day celebrations and the 2017 Excellence Awards, where Acting National Police Commissioner Lieutenant-General Khomotso Phahlane awarded and honoured outstanding members of the force.
Police said in the lead up to the events that they would celebrate January 27, National Police Day, because “on this day the leadership of the SAPS honours members and employees for their hard work and dedication in serving and protecting all in South Africa”.
The police spent the day in the Boitekong community handing over items to those in need.
In the evening the awards took place at the Sun City International Superbowl.
News24 understands that the generals also took part in an organised golf clinic.
Sound proof rooms, pillow menu
An invoice for the accommodation sent to the police, which News24 has seen, shows that at least 16 generals stayed in luxury twin rooms at the Cascades Hotel at a cost of R3 065 per night.
Some of the generals stayed for three nights: January 26, 27 and 28. One official stayed in a luxury suite for two nights at a cost of R7 144 per night. The total cost for accommodation at the hotel for the weekend was R121 933.
The luxury suite is described on Sun International’s website as being soundproof, with blackout curtains, a balcony or patio, outdoor furniture, a pillow menu and turn down service.
Spokesperson Brigadier Sally de Beer said the acting commissioner planned that the awards take place on the same day as National Police Day “as a cost saving initiative, and to optimise the availability of employees to perform their normal day-to-day functions”.
De Beer said the 2017 National Police Day celebration was held at Boitekong, Rustenburg “hence the decision to hold the National Excellence Awards Event at Sun City, which is the only venue near Rustenburg capable of holding such an event”.
She said accommodation at Sun City was limited and all available accommodation was identified and booked from the most affordable accommodation.
“Not all generals were accommodated in the Cascades, and the accommodation of those who were accommodated in the Cascades [was] funded from sponsorship funds. Several generals were accommodated in the Cabana’s, etc,” De Beer said.
“Some dignitaries had to stay over for more than one night and, in general, only those who had to travel significant distances were allowed to stay over for more than two nights.”
She said sponsorship funds were used to minimise the impact on the SAPS budget.