Cele inquiry: Justice rushed is no justice at all

2012-04-03 20:19

Pretoria - Justice delayed is justice denied, and the converse is equally true, Judge Jake Moloi, chairperson of the board of inquiry into the conduct of beleaguered police chief Bheki Cele, said on Tuesday.

The board appreciated the vast considerations it had to make before releasing its report, he said at the end of the second day of closing arguments in the Tshwane council chambers.

"Justice rushed is no justice at all," he said.

"The fact that this matter is of national and international interest needs no further elaboration so that the board should speed up this process and return a report as soon as possible - that's as far as I can commit to go.

"The board has had arguments from both sides. It is incumbent upon the board to go and look at that evidence, assess it and compile the report which must be made available," said Moloi.

"We don't want to rush a report based on no facts at all. We can assure you that… the report will be available soon," he said.

Cele tainted

Moloi commended the media's "widespread coverage of the hearing proceedings". He also saluted other stakeholders who contributed to the running of the event.

In its closing arguments, the evidence-leading team, led by advocate Viwe Notshe SC, insisted that Cele was tainted and that the inquiry had to recommend for his dismissal.

"We submit that if his conduct continues like this, unabated, it will lead to the commission of the crimes he wants to combat," Notshe said.

Some of the witnesses, particularly from the Police and Prisons Civil Rights’ Union (Popcru), were missing the plot, by idolising Cele only because of his contribution to crime combating in the country, he said.

"Combating of crime is one element of the administration. If we do not look after the money, we will not be able to combat crime. If he is a crime fighter and cannot administer money, that is a huge problem."

Notshe slated Cele for the 5 July 5 2010 extension of police's space requirements, which differed from the size approved by the public works department's national bids adjudication board.

"What it means is if the bid adjudication board says you must buy five cars, you will buy 20 because they have said buy cars? That cannot be so. Maladministration of funds is against crime fighting," said Notshe.

He also criticised Cele for approving the extension of space without consulting the police's chief financial officer.

No apology

The space requirement was amended from 21 000 to 25 000m² at a meeting between property tycoon Roux Shabangu, Cele and other police officials.

Notshe said it was disturbing to note that, in light of the findings of the Public Protector Thuli Madonsela, Cele had not apologised for his role in the flawed procurement process.

"I waited with bated breath expecting the national commissioner to say: Please forgive me. The findings demonstrate that I am not fit. I took my eyes off the till. Please forgive me.

"We did not get that. We got statements from someone who doesn't appreciate his responsibilities as head of department.

"We submit the board should make a recommendation for his removal. He is unfit to hold office and is incapable of carrying out his duties," Notshe submitted.

Earlier, Cele's representative advocate Vincent Maleka SC urged the inquiry to discard the repeated call for his client to be fired, saying Cele had "discharged his duties as outlined in the Constitution and the [SA Police Services] Act".

Not based on evidence

He said recommending Cele's sacking would be inappropriate.

"It's not based on evidence. We ask you to make a different recommendation. The national commissioner has discharged his duties as outlined in the Constitution and the SAPS Act," said Maleka.

He urged the inquiry to follow in the footsteps of Madonsela, who did not find evidence of an improper relationship between Cele and Shabangu.

Maleka submitted that the Cabinet's view of Cele's conduct should be taken into account as it was significant that the "national Cabinet had not passed a vote of no confidence against General Cele".

"We urge you to take that into account, because it is relevant to the overall conduct of the commissioner.

"We would have thought that the overall conduct of the national commissioner would become more negative to him if Cabinet had expressed a negative view. Cabinet has instead expressed a positive view," said Maleka.

The board of inquiry, appointed by President Jacob Zuma is mandated to establish whether Cele acted corruptly, dishonestly, or with an undeclared conflict of interest in relation to two police lease deals signed with Shabangu, one for a building in Pretoria, another for a building in Durban.

It also has to determine his fitness to hold office, and his capacity to efficiently execute his duties.

- SAPA

Read more on:    police  |  roux shabangu  |  bheki cele  |  police lease saga  |  corruption  |  tenders
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Wednesday Bellville - 06:04 AM
    Road name: N1 Inbound
    DELAYS between the R300 Highway and the Durban Road exit
  • Wednesday Cape Town - 05:45 AM
    Road name: Metro Rail
    DELAYS on the Cape Flats line due to cable theft at Lansdowne
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Torch 9810

The BlackBerry Torch 9810 gives you the powerful combination of...

From R2820.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may find yourself fascinated by something which could draw you in to obsessively exploring this subject in depth....read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.