Top cop quits amid probe

2010-08-29 15:33

Johannesburg - The deputy national police commissioner, Lieutenant General Hamilton Hlela, and two of his subordinates have resigned, the office of the national commissioner said on Sunday.

Spokesperson Nonkuleko Mbatha said Hlela resigned in June, for personal reasons.

The Sunday Independent reported that Hlela and two of his subordinates resigned in the middle of a probe involving contracts amounting to R4bn in his department.

Mbatha said the divisional commissioner of supply management unit, Lieutenant General Matthews Siwundla and his subordinate, Major General Stephanus Terblanche resigned in July and August respectively.

"They have reasons which I cannot comment on," Mbatha said.

Hlela was responsible for supply chain management which is at the centre of investigation by the Special Investigation Unit (SIU).

President Jacob Zuma has recently asked the SIU to probe corruption within the SAPS.

The Sunday Independent reported that a preliminary report stated that Hlela had allegedly been aware of corruption in his department since August 2008, but had not acted.

Hlela told the newspaper that he had taken early retirement and would assist investigators if required.

"The investigation must carry... I'm still in South Africa," he told the paper.

Mbatha said national Commissioner, General Bheki Cele, raised the issue of violation of procurement procedures when he met the head of the SIU, Willie Hofmeyr.