Huge opposition to McBride choice

2013-11-12 16:15
Robert McBride (Aet Pretorius, Beeld)

Robert McBride (Aet Pretorius, Beeld)

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Johannesburg - Opposition parties have criticised a decision to recommend former Ekurhuleni metro police chief Robert McBride as head of the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid).

The Democratic Alliance would "vehemently" oppose the appointment in Parliament, MP Dianne Kohler Barnard said on Tuesday.

"Ipid is responsible for investigating police officials in positions of authority and deals with sensitive information on a daily basis, thus the executive director must be a person free of scandal."

Lobby group AfriForum said Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa should resign for nominating McBride.

"Minister Mthethwa, with this step, clearly indicated that the efficacy and integrity of the police is not a priority for him," said spokesperson Ian Cameron.

‘Sickest joke of the millennium’

The Freedom Front Plus said the recommendation made a "farce and mockery" of Mthethwa's comments that he would eradicate corruption in the police.

"Ipid investigates corruption in the police and the head of this institution should not be a controversial person and should have an irreproachable character," spokesperson Pieter Groenewald said.

Christian Democratic Party leader Theunis Botha said the recommendation was "a serious challenge for being the sickest joke of the millennium".

"This makes a mockery of all the ANC promises that the policy of cadre deployment will be based on merit."

Mthethwa said earlier that Cabinet decided at a meeting on Wednesday to recommend McBride as Ipid executive director.

"We believe Mr McBride's appointment as head of Ipid will help this important institution to achieve [its]... mandate," Mthethwa said in a statement.

He said McBride was the successful candidate following shortlisting, an interview process, and Cabinet's endorsement.

"However, in line with the Ipid Act, the appointment can only be finalised once Parliament has concurred."

‘Controversial figure’

Kohler Barnard said Mthethwa had requested that the portfolio committee on police consider McBride's nomination in a letter published in Parliament's announcements, tablings and committees on Tuesday morning.

"According to the Ipid Act, the nomination must be considered within 30 parliamentary days."
She said the Ipid should not be led by "such a controversial figure".

"The executive director must be suitably qualified for the position, not have previous convictions, and be a person of integrity."

Cameron said Mthethwa's decision had jeopardised the integrity of the police.

"McBride had been previously arrested for arms smuggling, drunk driving and defeating the ends of justice. Now he must investigate and control corruption and malpractice in the police..." he said.

‘Mthethwa should be fired’

Groenewald said Mthethwa was violating the public's trust with the recommendation.

"McBride is extremely controversial and definitely not suitable for the position. The public should be able to trust the head of the Ipid because a lot of complaints are against the [SA Police Service]."

Botha said Mthethwa should be fired.

"Surely, no other minister is as determined to destroy his or her department," he said.

"If President [Jacob] Zuma does not now fire this bungling minister, the ANC should not be surprised when the world likens the Cabinet to a bunch of clowns."
Read more on:    police  |  afriforum  |  da  |  cdp  |  ipid  |  robert mcbride  |  dianne kohler barnard  |  theunis botha  |  nathi mthethwa

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