PRETORIA – Meet Sergeant Minah Thinane, one of only twenty-six women attached to the Tactical Response Teams (TRT) in the country.
Originally from Ga-Sekgopo in Limpopo, Sergeant Thinane began her career in the SAPS in 2007 when she was only twenty years old.
The member with 14 years’ service is attached to the Tshwane Tactical Response Team (TRT).
At the time when the TRT units were established, the thirty-five-year-old member was one of only two females that had qualified to serve in the specialised unit.
As a member of the TRT Unit, the member responds to medium to high-risk operations which include Cash-In-Transit (CIT) heists, armed robberies as well as the tracking and tracing of wanted suspects.
As a member of the TRT unit, Sergeant Thinane also tracks, locates, and facilitates the apprehension of perpetrators of crime, especially those involved in serious and violent crimes, such as the killing of police officials.
Sergeant Thinane and her team are usually deployed to crime hotspots to capacitate police stations and other units. They are often strategically deployed in areas that are crime-infested.
As a TRT member, she was also deployed to work during the 2010 World Cup where they would ensure the safety and security of all soccer teams that qualified to play in the World Cup.
On a daily basis, part of her responsibilities is also to escort cash vans to prevent and combat CITs.
To cope in such an environment, Sergeant Thinane says you need to be a team player and possess great communication skills.
“When you are working in an operation, you always need to know where your other unit members are so as to ensure their safety. I need to be able to assess the situation quickly and communicate with the crew. When TRT members enter a volatile situation, ours to act quickly to diffuse the situation”.
Sergeant Thinane says she finds pleasure in her job when she receives feedback from detectives that those who are behind serious and violent crimes in the country, have been convicted and are now serving lengthy terms in prison.
To Sergeant Thinane and other TRT members, we salute you for your bravery and hard work in ensuring that perpetrators of serious and violent crimes are apprehended and ultimately convicted before a court of law.