News24

Police apologise to journalist

2012-03-25 22:12

Polokwane - Limpopo police have apologised to freelance journalist Chester Makana for their shoddy investigation of an assault charge he pressed against provincial ANC Youth League member Clifford Mohloana.

The Polokwane regional court threw out the case for lack of evidence and told police to investigate the matter properly so that the case could be reinstated.

“We apologise to the [complainant] and ask him not to feel like he was let down," provincial police spokesperson Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi told African Eye News Service (AENS).

“It appears that the investigating officer was negligent in the case. He didn’t use the video footage of the assault in court and used only one witness,” he explained.

He promised that the case would be reinstated soon.

Makana, 28, pressed the charges against Mohloana in December last year.

Makana said he was assaulted while investigating a story about "ghost" delegates and fraudulent ballot papers at the ANC provincial conference where Limpopo Premier Cassel Mathale was re-elected as the party's provincial chairperson.

The incident, which took place outside the conference venue, was captured by an SABC TV crew and broadcast.

After Makana opened the case, Mohloana handed himself to the Polokwane police station.

On Friday Makana told AENS that he was disappointed that the case was thrown out of court.

“The investigating officer was not in court himself. He had all he needed to secure a conviction, but decided to let me down. I do not know what caused him to act like this, but I’m very disappointed,” said Makana.

 
 

Comments
  • brainbowgold - 2012-03-25 22:57

    I am certainly following this case with interest. At least SAPS have apologised and it's a step in the right direction. Let us now also get to the truth why the the investigating officer was "negligent". No doubt the political pressure was just too much for him and he could not do his duty and uphold justice.

  • Juan - 2012-03-26 02:10

    Incompetence is becomming an epidemic in the police. Sorry doesn't cut it, something drastic has to be done

  • Jayson - 2012-03-26 04:11

    I had a cocked loaded gun pointed in my face with a arrogant student cop behind the trigger. I was coming off the toilet in Menlyn. They were searching for 4 black males. I was no threat. But this little boy was ready to shoot me. Wtf. Try make a compliant with the police. Its a joke

      Chris - 2012-03-26 07:56

      Recipe for success: complain to the ICD, then send the story to the news. The only time they do anything about it is when the spotlight is on it.

  • eben.ferreira1 - 2012-03-26 06:47

    Its just the way they do things.

  • chiepner - 2012-03-26 07:38

    The investigating officer was obviously "asked" by either those involved in the assualt or them connections to try and get the case thrown out. All well that the SAPS apologised, but I would like to know the officer that was in charge of this case - will he be investigated why he did not do his job properly in the first place? If it's incompetence will he be "rehabilitated" by being educated on how to actually do his job or if it was "buddy buddy" will he be suspended and if found guilty fired - or will he be left alone to maybe next time botch another investigation and another one and another one and another one....

  • Jayson - 2012-03-26 08:24

    Thanks Chris. I did call the ICD. They said they would get back to me. This was six months ago. Its a no go.

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