‘Suspend Mountain Rise commissioner’ — DA

2009-08-28 00:00

THE delays in executing Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa’s order to charge the controversial Mountain Rise police station commissioner, Hariram Badul, have raised concern among the public, and the Democratic Alliance in KwaZulu-Natal has called for his suspension pending the internal investigation.

KZN DA community safety spokesman Sizwe Mchunu has challenged the decision to keep Badul at the helm of the station while there is an ongoing investigation into allegations that crime statistics were manipulated and case dockets stored.

Mchunu has called for the immediate suspension of Badul. “Our requests for the station commissioner’s suspension, to KZN’s former community safety MEC, fell on deaf ears. We now call on the new MEC, Willies Mchunu, to remove Badul from his position pending the outcome of a formal investigation. It is our strong belief that the outcome of any investigation will be compromised while he is still ensconced as station commissioner.”

Mchunu’s call comes after more allegations against Badul and KZN provincial commissioner, Hamilton Ngidi, emerged in court papers presented by the suspended head of the Independent Complaints Directorate (ICD), Tabiso Ralo.

Ralo was suspended and charged with misconduct shortly after she led the raid that uncovered the alleged crime statistics rigging.

The Sunday Times published the affidavit Ralo presented at the high court in Pietermaritzburg when applying for legal representation during her internal disciplinary hearing.

According to the Sunday Times, Ralo’s affidavit reveals that Ngidi made “certain promises” to station commissioners, which allowed them preferential treatment, and that state funds were used to finance Badul’s lifestyle.

She also alleges that Badul approached her shortly after the raid to “negotiate” a resolution to the matter.

According to the papers, Ngidi phoned Ralo during the raid, questioning its purpose.

The Sunday Times reported that Ngidi said he called Ralo because she had cordoned off the station.

“No people were allowed to go inside or outside of Mountain Rise. I was worried about service delivery. I did not query the investigation, I queried the way it was done. To seal off a police station you need the provincial commissioner’s authority,” Ngidi was quoted as saying.

He also said he was seeking legal advice on allegations of giving special treatment.

In his call for Badul’s suspension, Sizwe Mchunu said the DA remains committed to unearthing the truth around the rigging of crime stats in KZN.

“We believe that the allegations against Mountain Rise SAPS are just the tip of the iceberg and will be taking immediate action by submitting parliamentary questions to the MEC along with calling for a full investigation.”

SAPS spokeswoman Director Phindile Radebe said the investigation is still under way and could not comment on Badul’s suspension. She could not say when the investigation will be completed.

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