After a series of “disrespectful” social media posts made by Western Cape deputy police commissioner Major-General Jeremy Vearey, the top cop has been dismissed.
Vearey’s sacking follows a disciplinary process, where he faced misconduct charges.
His social media posts were said to be aimed at issues within the police force, but also at national police commissioner Khehla Sitole.
“You allegedly brought the name of the employer into disrepute by posting images and messages, and causing same to be circulated through social media…[The posts] were intended to degrade the leadership of the South African Police Service and disrespect the authority of the national commissioner,” read the notice of the investigation.
In March, Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union’s Richard Mamabolo confirmed Vearey had been served with the misconduct notice and said the union would be making representations on his behalf.
Vearey and former Crime Intelligence boss Peter Jacobs, who was summarily demoted by Sitole earlier this year, are not unfamiliar bedfellows and are close allies, their history dating back to the fight against the apartheid regime in the ANC’s armed wing, Umkhonto weSizwe.
In 2016, the two headed the largest illicit firearms investigation in South African history which saw thousands of weapons meant for destruction being sold to the criminal underworld in the Western Cape.
Guns, which were effectively stolen from under the noses of the police by a network of crooked cops, have been linked to more than 1 000 murder cases.
While Jacobs and Vearey turned the screws on the syndicate, they were suddenly transferred from their positions, a move which they – in court papers – claimed had been an effort to torpedo the investigation, under the banner of Project Impi.
Two years after they were shifted out of their posts, the Labour Court ruled their transfers had been unlawful and ordered they return to their posts.
Jacobs was installed as Crime Intelligence head and Vearey took office in his current post.
Additional reporting by News24 Wire