Sniper Protection Services made headline news this past week. Not for good work done, but by being accused of allowing untrained and unregistered security guards to operate, some of them underaged.
Sniper Protection Services is also accused of assaulting employees and working excessive hours.
The Bulletin spoke to Adriaan Keyser on Sunday afternoon. Adriaan is a former employee of Sniper Protection Services and worked in Bethal.
When asked about training Adriaan responded that they received no training whatsoever.
“We also did not have any weapons to protect ourselves with most of the time,” he said. “We are also not registered anywhere.”
He further stated that when they were given weapons, it would normally be a sword and sometimes a bow and arrows, but normally they would not have any weapons to defend themselves with.
Adriaan also said that they had to guard sites without any backup or weapons.
In the initial article by ENCA it is stated that South Africa has over 9,000 security companies that employ over half a million guards. The actions of these companies, who run them and who they employ warrants greater scrutiny.
The Bulletin is aware of at least one case where a person allegedly discharged a firearm, was allegedly declared unfit to carry a firearm and is now employed by a local security firm.
Adriaan also confirmed the allegations of assault by the owner of Sniper Protection Services. There is a video (e-News) that shows Walter Stander tazing Adriaan because he fell asleep.
Adriaan said that Stander spoke daily about the consequences of sleeping on duty.
“Stander would either taze or beat us,” Keyser said.
A former employee stated that he was 17-years-old and worked for the company for five months.
He said that Stander insisted on being called “the General” by the security staff and they had to work twelve-hour shifts, sometimes multiple shifts in a row.
“Stander’s wife was called Brigadier.”
He and many others say they were never paid overtime.
Keyser said also said that this treatment wasn’t isolated.
Yet another former employee, DJ van Straaten said: “Stander demanded you to work permanently without any leave allowed. If you take a day off, it’s deducted from your pay.”
Stander doesn’t deny employing a 17-year-old, but says he was helping a family.
As for the tazering video, he said that he “gave the guy a fright.”
Walter Stander served time in jail according to e-News.
Walter was convicted of murdering his wife, Maria Ernestina (29), on February 11, 1999 according to the reports.
In a mad rage he battered her to death and assaulted her mother, Aletta Henning, when she tried to help her daughter.
Magistrate Nel found Stander was able to distinguish between right and wrong when he battered his wife.
The initial story can be read here: https://www.news24.com/xArchive/Archive/Pastor-guilty-of-killing-wife-20020829. Stander was a youth pastor at the time.
The Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority (PSIRA) has done an inspection at Sniper Protection Services and will comment in the coming days.
In a statement dated 23 January, PSIRA stated the following:
Earlier this morning, the Authority had served letters of intention to suspend the registration of both the business and the Director of the security company in his personal capacity.
Furthermore, whilst our investigation is on-going, the Authority will also establish the following important aspects associated with this case:
• The unlawful hiding of faces and/or wearing of masks/balaclavas by Security Officers; which is often used for authorised covert operations;
• Whether the kind of training these Security Officers has been accredited by PSiRA;
• Besides the Industry’s Code of Conduct, establish whether the security service provider has complied or otherwise, with other relevant legislations prohibiting child labour. The Code of Conduct for Security Service Providers, 2003, prescribes amongst others the following:
- A security service provider may not perform any act which is calculated to bring the Authority into contempt or disrepute.
- A security service provider may not act in any manner that threatens or poses an unreasonable risk to the public order or safety.
PSIRA confirmed that they are investigating the allegations above and that their inspectors found several irregularities. PSIRA will release a statement in due course.
The Video of ENCA can be seen here: https://www.enca.com/news/security-companies-under-scrutiny?fbclid=IwAR0r6mjGIwhSZ5GKZSQwOvXzeZu2du9-NeKkFI0pZszCWIwt5F-nqgk5lno.
The Bulletin could not establish contact with Mr Stander to verify the allegations against him.