By Staff Reporter
The South African Police Union has called on President Cyril Ramaphosa to immediately institute a board of enquiry into the fitness of national police commissioner Gen Khehla Sitole to continue holding office after he allegedly lied about the restructuring of the South Africa Police Service in the National Assembly.
SAPU acting General Secretary Tumelo Mogodiseng stated in a press release availed to The Daybreaknews that the issue of senior officials telling a lie to Parliament was a serious offence and as such President Ramaphosa needed not wait any day longer.
“The South African Policing Union would like to call upon President Cyril Ramaphosa to institute a board of enquiry into the fitness of national police commissioner General Khehla Sitole to hold office. Our calls stem from the serious offence that General Sitole committed in the National Assembly where he lied by stating that the restructuring of the SAPS will take effect from the 1st of November 2018 following widespread consultations with relevant stakeholders including organised labour,” Mogodiseng indicated. “We have not been part to any consultation in the police bargaining chamber, the SSSBC, or any bilateral for that matter. The issue of senior officials telling a lie to parliament is a serious offence. We are even considering laying perjury charges against General Sitole. To mislead parliament is totally unacceptable.”
Secondly, according to Mogodiseng, SAPU has noted with grave concern the national commissioner’s absence in the many police issues that police minister Bheki Cele had taken over the police administration because of the national commissioner’s non availability.
“The police minister is the political head of the police, not the chief administration officer. In the recent past we have witnessed the police minister taking over the command of the police because the national commissioner has turned himself to be the protection of the officer of the Minister. The Minister has not only announced the deployment of police officers like the TRT in Westbury Johannesburg recently, he has practically deployed them because they had no commander,” SAPU stated. “SAPU calls upon President Ramaphosa not to wait any day longer. The board of enquiry into Sitole’s fitness to hold office will determine his capacity as well. We are of the view that General Sitole will not assist in the daunting task ahead –the battle against crime. If it was not for Minister Cele’s passion for policing, we believe the SAPS would be on auto-pilot. We are not calling for General Sitole’s head yet. Let the enquiry determine his fitness to hold office. It is clear that he is out of depth. However, due processes must be followed first.”