Cele to respond to lease report

2011-07-18 14:09

National police commissioner General Bheki Cele will respond tomorrow to findings by the Public Protector that his actions in connection with two controversial building leases were unlawful, improper and constituted maladministration.

Police spokesperson Brigadier Sally de Beer said today that Cele would hold a press conference on the matter tomorrow.

Last week the Public Protector Thuli Madonsela released her report, titled Against the Rules Too on the lease of the Transnet Building to the police by property tycoon Roux Shabangu for more than three times the going market rate.

On Thursday, Madonsela pointed out that while Cele himself did not sign the leases, in his capacity as the chief accounting officer, he gave authorisation for the department of public works to proceed with the leases.

Madonsela said the Durban lease would have been worth R1.16 billion over 10 years while that of the Middestad Building in Pretoria was worth R604 million over the same period.

She said the market value of the building meant it should have been leased at R40 a square metre and not the R125.30 a square metre ultimately agreed on.

The report into the Transnet Building lease in Durban follows her report into the Middestad Building lease in Pretoria, which she released in February.

In that earlier report she found that Cele’s actions were also improper, unlawful and amounted to maladministration.
In her recommendations she said that Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa should take disciplinary action against police officials mentioned in her report.

She also recommended that President Jacob Zuma should act against public works minister Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde for failing to cooperate with the probe into the two controversial building leases.

It is not yet known when Mahlangu-Nkabinde will respond. On Friday, she asked for time to mourn the passing of her brother.

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