Opposing Robert McBride for iPid head like opposing Mandela presidency – ANCYL

2013-11-15 14:01

Robert McBride has distinguished himself as a man who upholds the law, the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) has said.

Referring to McBride’s nomination as the new head of the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) this week, the ANCYL said it had faith in his abilities.

Spokesperson Bandile Masuku said this faith stemmed from McBride’s distinctive leadership of the Ekurhuleni metro police.

“Robert McBride is a seasoned South African patriot who fought against the demon of racism and white supremacy.

“His contribution is well known and those who were adversely affected by it were apologised to through the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) processes.”

McBride was part of an Umkhonto weSizwe group that bombed the Why Not Restaurant and Magoo’s Bar in Durban on June 14 1986. Three people were killed and 69 others injured in the explosion. He was captured and convicted, and sentenced to death.

In 1992, he was released after his actions were classified as politically motivated. He was later granted amnesty at the TRC.

“It is within this background that we are perplexed by the noises that emanate from certain sections of society who are objecting to his recommendation to be appointed to head Ipid,” said Masuku.

He said those opposed to the recommendation were similar to those who opposed Nelson Mandela’s election as president on the basis that he was a terrorist.

The uMkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans’ Association (MKMVA) said today it rejected the “unconstitutional” objections to the nomination.

“The objections that are raised by those opposed to his appointment, smack of racial arrogance and vindictiveness,” said MKMVA chairperson Kebby Maphatsoe.

He said that after McBride had been granted amnesty, his name had continued to be dragged into negative media headlines, in an attempt to harm his personality and destroy his credibility.

“The urge for racial vengeance by the white opposition, its civil society grouping made of former apartheid security agencies officials and intellectuals, seems to be behind this frenzy of unconstitutional objections.”

He said McBride had no criminal record and was appropriately qualified.

McBride won an appeal in March against a conviction of drunk driving and attempting to obstruct justice. He was arrested in 2006 after crashing his official car on the R511 following a Christmas party.

In September 2011, a Pretoria regional magistrate sentenced McBride to two years’ imprisonment for driving under the influence of alcohol and in effect three years’ imprisonment for attempting to obstruct the course of justice.

In 1998, McBride was arrested in Mozambique on charges of gun-running. He spent seven months in a Maputo prison and was later cleared of all charges. He claimed he was investigating illegal gun-running with the National Intelligence Agency.

In 1999, McBride faced an assault charge after he, underworld boss Cyril Beeka and another man visited an escort agency and allegedly assaulted an employee.

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