News24

Police mum on public protector's report

2011-01-16 18:45

Johannesburg - Police commissioner General Bheki Cele's office on Sunday declined to comment on reports that he was considering interdicting Public Protector Thuli Madonsela from releasing a report into the controversial R500m lease for new police headquarters.

"We were given up to January 23 to respond to the report. We are currently working on the report," Cele's spokesperson Major General Nonkululeko Mbatha said.

She was responding to a City Press report which said Cele was preparing to go "to war" over a report after Madonsela found that he, the police and the department of public works were wrong in signing the multi-million-rand lease agreement for the Middestad building in Pretoria with property tycoon Roux Shabangu.

The Sunday newspaper further alleged that Cele’s chief legal adviser Lieutenant General Julius Molefe and lawyers were interrogating police staff who were interviewed by Madonsela.

It also said that a legal opinion commissioned by former public works minister Geoff Doidge, shortly before he was sacked by President Jacob Zuma, also found the lease agreement with Shabangu to be “null and void” and that Doidge subsequently cancelled the contract.

After being appointed new public works minister, Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde obtained a separate legal opinion from a state legal adviser that contradicted the senior counsel opinion obtained by Doidge.

Rectified deal

She accepted this opinion and rectified the deal with Shabangu.

"We cannot respond to media before we respond to the Public Protector. If you want comment on this, you should speak to City Press," said Mbatha.

The Public Protector has sent a draft report of a probe to complainant Paul Hoffman, who is director of the SA Institute for Accountability, Cele, the ministers of police and public works and the accounting officers of the police and public works department.

The parties originally had until January 3 to respond.

However, the date was changed after police asked for an extension, "for operational reasons".

The Sunday Times reported a few months ago that the deal had been signed without following public tender procedures, prompting the Hawks and the Public Protector to investigate.

The report will be released to the public in February.

Comments
  • JoggieRSA@24.com - 2011-01-16 19:56

    Mmm... Pulling rank sounds exactly what this article says... Viva ANC, VIVA the downfall of South Africa. I just do not understand how ANC members cannot see what the ANC is doing to my, your and everybody elses money. And to all those idiots that want to, now play the race card on this issue... This is not about race... Its about a political party abusing normal people like you and me, black and whites hard earned money to enrich themselves... I lived in a township where the ANC leaders drove around in their fancy cars, promising running water and flush toilets... Yes... We got it... After two years.. Two toilets and two taps of water for 200 houses. Then the ANC leaders drove around again with even more fancy cars telling us there is not enough money to give us more taps or toilets. And then the faithful vote ANC again... Hopefully next year we might get another tap... If the fancy car does not cost to much... WAKE UP SOUTH AFRICA! FIGHT FOR WHAT IS OURS!

      mpanzame - 2011-01-16 21:25

      Possibly not the only thing Cele pulls ne???

  • Pete_Tong - 2011-01-16 20:15

    RACISTS RACIST RACISTS RACISTS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Nico - 2011-01-16 21:01

      Are you blind?

      GBES - 2011-01-17 09:09

      Its Money, Money, Money ,Money,idiot! Cele is scared about something we do not yet know. Maybe a few million in foreign banks ?

  • bosegoos - 2011-01-16 20:25

    The 'operational reasons' which prompted the General's advisors to ask for the deadline to be shifted clearly shows that the deal concluded by the General with Roux is problemmatic. I wonder what coverup will now be implemented.

  • chantal de pierres - 2011-01-16 20:46

    Advocate Madonsela, do your job without fear or favour, the SA people thank you!

  • mpanzame - 2011-01-16 21:24

    Hey General, if you wanna fight, stick a toe up Winnies crinkly bottom.

      Chop tjop - 2011-01-16 22:31

      *read the occupied sign, people!* Is it not in that Big black hole where Stompie disappeared? ... Lol

  • Zakhele - 2011-01-16 22:20

    Mr. Cele, This is one thing you screwed up buddy. Don't try to cover up and buy time. Just come out in the open and tell us what happened? After all you knew you took up a high position that had been under scrutinity (Jackie Selebi, etc) and would have thought that the last thing a new occupant would sign bid monies like this without checking procedures and facts. I would really be surprised that you screwed up deliberately. If you did not know how government tenders are supposed to be awarded just say so. Otherwise you are dum to think you could bundle this and hope that no-one will uncover it. If that is what you did and you think you can cover then you are not fit to be Police Commissioner and you really, really dum Sir. Cele can you tell us now in your own words what happened to this tender? Don't use girls like Mbatha to speak for you because this is a serious issue and we know you can speak for yourself. Expect no sympathy from us. If you steal public funds we have no choice but to stand for the truth. TELL US WHAT HAPPENED finish and klaar?

      GBES - 2011-01-17 09:12

      He will admit nothing.Why is such a powerful politician scared to tell the truth? Selebi was also scared to tell the truth,and today we know why. We should appoint career policemen to these top jobs.These political appointments are using their position to enrich their themselves,friends and families.

      Mordred - 2011-01-17 09:32

      Zakhele, your comments are brilliant but unfortunately Cele and his ilk have never been taught to tell the truth.

      Bukiswa - 2011-02-24 12:46

      I wonder who is capable for this position in Zuma's cabinet?

  • v3 - 2011-01-16 23:00

    Why can't ANC cronies ever just admit they were wrong? Admit they made a mistake - sorry! and be done with it. Dumb pride. Cele may have lost the Dewani extradition case through his big mouth.

  • Mordred - 2011-01-17 09:30

    All I did was laugh after I read the article. As always, the idiots under the biggest idiot, Cele, don't know how to compile a report and because of rampant nepotism and affirmative action, there are no white people to do it. WHAT A JOKE.

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