We’ll prove Cele is corrupt: Inquiry hears

2012-04-02 10:55

Submissions will be presented to prove that suspended national police commissioner Bheki Cele is corrupt and dishonest, a board of inquiry into allegations against him has been told.

Cele had initiated and participated in a “flawed tender process”, the evidence-leading team’s advocate Mbuyiseli Madlanga submitted in his closing arguments in the Tshwane Council Chambers.

“General Cele was not a nearby bystander in the tender process, he was actively part of the process,” Madlanga contended.

The board of inquiry, appointed by President Jacob Zuma and chaired by Judge Jake Moloi, is mandated to establish whether Cele acted corruptly, dishonestly or with an undeclared conflict of interest in relation to two police lease deals signed with property tycoon Roux Shabangu.

It also has to determine his fitness to hold office and his capacity to efficiently execute his duties.

Such misconduct could warrant a recommendation for his dismissal.

Today, Madlanga argued that the degree of Cele’s misconduct was gross and that the situation was worsened by transgressions of the Public Finance Management Act.

He said former police procurement head and deputy commissioner Hamilton Hlela had been a good witness whose evidence should be accepted by the board.

Cele had called Hlela back to a Southern African Development Community policing event in Boksburg in March 2010, to raise questions around the procurement process, Madlanga argued.

This has been denied by Cele, who testified that he called Hlela back to the venue because, according to police protocol, he wasn’t supposed to leave before his superiors.

However, Madlanga contended that Hlela left after the procurement talks and that this was corroborated by his driver.

According to Hlela’s evidence, when he met Cele in the parking lot of the Boksburg hotel, he was told about the existence of office space and that the owner was going to call him.

Hlela said Shabangu later called him to discuss accommodation procurement.

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