SA Air Force EagleSA Air Force Emblem

SA Air Force Police - 1976-date

The SA Air Force Police are also linked to the SACMP. During World War Two, members of the Royal Air Force Police were attached to the wartime Military Police Corps to help maintain discipline over members of the SA Air Force and RAF personnel attached to the SAAF.
During September 1974 a requirement for an own police force within the SA Air Force was determined. On 14 July 1976 Capt J.C. Marais was appointed as the first Senior Staff Officer of the SA Air Force Police. Under his command were initially
  • 1 x Flight Sergeant
  • 1 x Sergeant
  • 2 x Corporals
Initially the personnel for the SAAF Police were from the SA Police and the SA Railway Police, but many members of the SACMP later transferred to the new police organisation. Over the years this organisation grew from five members operating from SAAF Headquarters in Church Street Pretoria to over 150 members operating at nineteen different locations.
By 1987 a Cmdt (Lt col) de Beer was SSO SAAF Police. He was later replaced by Lt col P.J. Potgieter as SSO SAAF Police. Two years later Lt col Potgieter also retired and was in turn replaced by Lt col L.R. Prinsloo. For a short while during 1996 the SAAF Police were under the control of the Inspector General of the SAAF, but on 1 July 1996 the SAAF Police were placed under the administrative control of Chief of Air Staff Personnel (CAS Pers). Lt col M.J. Swanepoel took over as SSO SAAF Police on 1 February 1997 until he transferred to the SACMP.
The functions of the SA Air Force Police are:
  • Maintenance of law, order and discipline


  • Prevention of of crime.


  • Investigation of crime.
  • .
SAAF Police vehicle badgeUntil 1998, male members of the SA Air Force Police were distinguished by the light blue cap covers that they wore over their Service Dress caps. During 1998, the blue covers were withdrawn and the Air Force Police began wearing the standard flight caps of the SA Air Force. Sedans of the SAAF Police are easily recognised by the badge that is worn on their doors.

SAAF Police trade badgeIn 1998 a trade badge for the SAAF Police was introduced. The badge, to be worn on the right breast, comprises a wreath of protea leaves similar to those of other SAAF trade badge, together with a dagger and a five-pointed star reminiscent of a sheriff.

Winners of trophies within the SAAF Police were as follows:
  • 1985 - AFB Ysterplaat - Best SAAF Police Station
  • 1986 - AFB Hoedspruit - Best SAAF Police Station
  • 1987 - AFB Hoedspruit - Best SAAF Police Station / Best SADF Military Police Station
  • 1988 - AFB Ysterplaat - Best SAAF Police Station / Best SADF Military Police Station
  • 1989 - AFB Hoedspruit - Best SAAF Police Station
  • 1990 - AFB Swartkop - Best SAAF Police Station
  • 1991 - AFB Hoedspruit - Best SAAF Police Station / Best SADF Military Police Station
  • 1993 - AFB Swartkop - Best SAAF Police Station
  • 1994 - AFB Swartkop - Best SAAF Police Station
  • 1995 - AFB Louis Trichardt - Best SAAF Police Station
  • 1996 - AFB Louis Trichardt - Best SAAF Police Station
As part of the transformation process of the SA National Defence Force, the SA Air Force Police were transferred to the SANDF Military Police Agency on 1st April 1999. This change of command effectively meant that they ceased to function as a separate police organisation, but this in turn brought about greater opportunities and powers as their jurisdiction was now extended to all members of the SANDF and was no longer restricted to only the SAAF.