Khayelitsha cop matter going to ConCourt

2013-02-01 14:08
(Nielen Bottomley, News24)

(Nielen Bottomley, News24)

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Johannesburg - Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa will approach the Constitutional Court over a court ruling against his bid to stop a commission of inquiry into policing in Khayelitsha.

"The minister has now decided to make an application for leave to appeal to the Constitutional Court," his spokesperson, Zweli Mnisi, said on Friday.

The application will be based on the contents of the minority judgment in his unsuccessful bid to stop the inquiry.

In the majority judgment handed down in the Western Cape High Court, Mnisi explained, it was concluded that Western Cape Premier Helen Zille had complied fully with the principles of co-operative government, so the application made by Mthethwa had to be dismissed.

"The minority judgment, on the other hand, had concluded that the intergovernmental processes had not been fully complied with, and would have ordered the parties to finalise those processes and to report back to the court, so that the court could consider the application again," he said.

Poor policing


An official at the Constitutional Court said the application had not been received by Friday morning.

Mnisi said the minister believed the approach adopted in the minority judgment was the correct one.

The case that was dismissed on January 14 by the Western Cape High Court was about Mthethwa trying to stop Zille setting up a commission of inquiry into policing in the Cape Town suburb Khayelitsha after complaints by various community organisations last year.

Residents were complaining that police inaction had compelled them to take the law into their own hands.

Zille was accused of sensationalism and undermining the independence of the police.

The commission was supposed to have been headed by retired Constitutional Court judge Kate O'Regan and former National Director of Public Prosecutions advocate Vusi Pikoli, with public hearings scheduled from 12 November to 14 December 2012 and a full report due on 24 February 2013.

Terms of reference

Mnisi said both Mthethwa and the National Commissioner of Police General Riah Phiyega had undertaken to work with Zille and civil society organisations which had wanted the inquiry, to address their concerns.

Phiyega had established a task team to consider the matter and it had submitted a comprehensive report to her already, which suggested that further investigations were necessary.

She had drafted terms of reference for the broader enquiry, which Mthethwa had endorsed.

He did not want two inquiries considering the same complaints - so he wanted Zille to stop hers.
- SAPA
Read more on:    police  |  helen zille  |  riah phiyega  |  nathi mthethwa  |  cape town
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