Citizen Reporter
2 minute read
24 Apr 2017
12:13 pm

Mbalula intends to visit Hawks offices this afternoon

Citizen Reporter

Mbalula's visit comes after Ntlemeza reported for duty on Monday morning.

Minister of Police Fikile Mbalula has announced that he will be heading to the Directorate for Crime Priority Investigation (Hawks) offices this afternoon to address the “current issues” regarding the Hawks.

Mbalula’s visit comes after General Berning Ntlemeza reported for duty in his office at the Hawks headquarters in Pretoria to resume his work on Monday. This despite him no longer being an employee of the Hawks and, as an ordinary member of the police, having been told to report to acting national police commissioner Lieutenant-General Khomotso Phahlane.

Ntlemeza on Monday entered the Hawks building to his offices via a back entrance to avoid a small group of Democratic Alliance supporters and a dozen journalists.

DA spokesperson on police Zakhele Mbhele, who came to picket with a group of DA supporters at the entrance of the Hawks office in Silverton, said: “Because General Ntlemeza has filed with the Supreme Court of Appeal [SCA], it means technically he is not out of the position while that appeal is pending.

“But we believe this matter is too urgent and important to be delayed, and that is why we urged the police minister, Fikile Mbalula, to take steps to affect the suspension of Mr Ntlemeza in the meantime, which can be done by the parliamentary portfolio committee on police initiating an inquiry into Ntlemeze’s fitness to office and that will empower the minister to suspend him while the inquiry is under way.”

Mbhele said they believed parliament and the minister could not sit by idly while that governance crisis and the leadership of the Hawks remained under question.

He added if Ntlemeza returned to work, it would be a clear case of violation of the rule of law. “There is a very clear prima facie case against him that he is not fit to occupy this office. By being here it amounts to interference and a threat to the effective function of the Hawks, and we will certainly pushing for steps to be taken further in parliament for the suspension to take place.

Ntlemeza’s legal representative Comfort Ngidi told The Citizen his client did not sneak in, but used an entrance he always used in the past when reporting for duty.

“He is in his office doing his day’s work. He is back at work,” she said.

Ngidi said the SCA documents were filed last week Friday.

The High Court in Pretoria ruled that Ntlemeza’s appointment was unlawful and irregular.

A day after this ruling, Mbalula appointed Lieutenant-General Yolisa Matakata as the new acting head of the Hawks and instructed acting national police commissioner Lieutenant-General Kgomotso Phahlane to collect all property of the Hawks from Ntlemeza.

Ngidi said earlier that should Ntlemeza get any resistance from doing his work, he would turn to the court for help.

Ntlemeza remains a police officer and has not yet been subjected to disciplinary procedures by the police. He therefore remains a member of the SA Police Service.