'Guptagate cop' part of SAPS reshuffle

By admin
20 January 2015

The SA Police Service plans to redeploy one of the officials accused in the Guptagate controversy - Gauteng's deputy police commissioner Major General Phumza Gela - to the Free State, a spokesperson said on Tuesday.

"... Nine senior managers from the Gauteng province have been given an opportunity to take up leadership roles at different levels of command across the Gauteng province," Lieutenant General Solomon Makgale said.

"Only Major General Phumza Gela has been asked to go outside Gauteng province to the Free State."

Makgale said it was vital to occasionally review plans and tactics to intensify the fight against crime, as the SAPS operated in a dynamic environment.

"In view of this, the SAPS top management has taken a decision to revitalise policing in the Gauteng province by enhancing capacity at operational level, where it is needed the most, with experienced senior managers," he said.

"We followed a very dignified process whereby all those affected were called individually to a meeting to discuss the changes. Their skills profiles, personal circumstance and the interests of the SAPS were taken into consideration."

Makgale said the majority of the affected employees had accepted redeployment.

"The affected individuals were also given 21 working days, which expires on 29 January 2015, to go and consider management's proposal.

"Should they come up with compelling reasons as to why they shouldn't be rotated, then management will certainly consider those. There will be no loss of benefits."

Last year, Times Live reported that Gela was suspended over his alleged involvement in the landing of the Gupta family's private aircraft at Waterkloof Air Force Base.

Government suspended five high-ranking officials and military personnel over the unauthorised landing, including Gela. The suspension was later lifted.

In May, Times Live reported that the SA Police Union (Sapu) had applied to the Labour Court for an order preventing Gela and another brigadier from intimidating two senior officers.

Gela was accused of abusing the commander of the Gauteng 10111 call centre Brigadier Shirley Venter and of withholding the pay of another officer, Brigadier Govindsamy Mariemuthoo.

It was unclear if there was a ruling made in the case. Sapu spokesperson Theto Mahlakoana could not be reached for clarity on Tuesday.