7 June 2012

South Africa: Auditor-General Must Probe Top Cop's Alleged Links to Crime Intelligence Slush Fund

Photo: ER24 EMS/Flickr
On 17 May 2010 the SAPS demonstrated along with Emergency Services how efficient they will be during the 2010 World Cup. Thousands of spectators joined the parade through the streets of Sandton.

press release

I will today be writing to the to request an investigation into potential maladministration and irregular expenditure authorised by the Acting National Police Commissioner Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi.

I will also request an explanation for the spending on luxury vehicles from the South African Police Service (SAPS) during its briefing to the Police Portfolio Committee on crime intelligence matters scheduled for Friday 15 June.

The timing of the revelations is curious considering the recent bold actions by Mkhwanazi and the ongoing factional battles within Crime Intelligence and the broader police service. Mkhwanazi is alleged to have fallen out of favour with President Zuma and Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa after he suspended Richard Mdluli in apparent defiance of the executive's wishes.

It is therefore imperative that the Auditor-General, an independent body removed from the political war raging within the police and the ANC, investigate the allegations made and put forward recommendations.

A report in The Star this morning reveals that Mkhwanazi allegedly authorised expenditure from the controversial Secret Services Account (SSA) for operational expenditure in direct contravention of the Secret Service Act.

The Auditor-General must also investigate the spending spree of Acting Crime Intelligence boss Fannie Masemola, during which 140 luxury vehicles were acquired, including BMW X3s, Audi Q5s, the latest Jeep SRTs and the latest BMW 320 models.

A transfer of at least five luxury vehicles from Crime Intelligence to Operational Response Services allegedly took place between January and February. The vehicles were a Mercedes-Benz ML 350 CDI, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Mercedes-Benz C300 and a Lexus 350 RXI.

It is unacceptable that police officers have to perform their duties without bulletproof vests, in stations that have no electricity, toilets and water while the SAPS top brass wastes money on luxury vehicles.

Police morale is already severely undermined as a result of the shenanigans of senior police officers, including Richard Mdluli, Jackie Selebi and Bheki Cele. Spending on luxury vehicles, at the expense of the needs of police men and women on the street, does very little to boost their morale or efforts in the fight against crime.

Dianne Kohler Barnard, Shadow Minister of Police

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