Football star Radebe to help S Africa police get fit
12/31/2009 5:20:02 PM -
Sports stars such as ex-footballer Lucas Radebe are to help South Africa's police officers get fit, the police chief has told the BBC.
Police Commissioner Bheki Cele admitted that some serving officers are overweight and even obese.
He said that all senior police managers would have to start going to gym sessions in January 2010.
South Africa hosts the World Cup next year and the authorities have sought to reassure visitors about crime.
Mr Cele said that using stars such as Mr Radebe, former captain of both the national team and England's Leeds United, would help motivate police officers to go to the gym.
"We are trying to make it attractive, we are trying to make it stylish, [so] police will find it easy to gym with former soccer, boxing stars," he told the BBC's Network Africa programme.
Some officers have already started training with retired world boxing champion "Baby" Jake Matlala, he said, adding that overweight officers would no longer be tolerated.
"All members of the South African police must be fit, must be healthy, must be ready for a tough year ahead."
The gym session will become compulsory for all officers later in 2010.