EXCLUSIVE: Mashaba alleges Ntlemeza is blocking Joburg corruption cases

2017-04-04 08:24
Joburg Executive Mayor Herman Mashaba. (File, Jabu Kumalo)

Joburg Executive Mayor Herman Mashaba. (File, Jabu Kumalo)

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Johannesburg – A fight is brewing between Johannesburg’s mayor and the national head of the Hawks over the numerous corruption cases the city has been pursuing.

Herman Mashaba told News24 that reliable sources had informed him that Lieutenant General Berning Ntlemeza had ordered that any cases the city opened should not be pursued and should instead be taken to him.

"I received information that General Ntlemeza has given instructions for Hawks officers not to investigate corruption cases in the City of Johannesburg," Mashaba said.

"I am very concerned about this. I don’t run the city in my name only. I run it on behalf of the residents. I find this unacceptable."

Mashaba said the city had opened many cases with the Hawks, where it appeared no investigation had taken place.

"This confirms to me there is a problem. There are cases open since last year and nothing has happened."

'Leave investigations to Hawks'

Ntlemeza has faced much public scrutiny in the last two weeks following a unanimous High Court in Pretoria ruling that his appointment be set aside as he was unfit to hold office.

The court ruled on March 17 that a 2015 judgment against the embattled Hawks head was correct and that he was dishonest and lacked integrity.

Then-police minister Nathi Nhleko and Ntlemeza are appealing the judgment.

The Hawks called Mashaba’s allegations "pure nonsense".

"The Hawks has never had any engagement with Mr Mashaba and we do not know where he got such allegations," said spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Robert Netshiunda.

"If the mayor has agents within the DPCI [Hawks] or elsewhere who are feeding him with wrong information pertaining to the Hawks, the mayor is hereby warned to focus on his responsibilities and leave serious investigations in the capable hands of the Hawks."

Netshiunda said South Africa was happy with the stance that the Hawks had taken against corruption in municipalities across the country.

'No right to dictate to Hawks'

"Mr Mashaba, instead of forcing his nose where it does not belong, he should be focusing his energy on rooting out corruption in his municipality by reporting such to the Hawks."

Netshiunda asked why the corruption cases in the Johannesburg municipality needed the special attention of the national head. He said last year the Hawks made a breakthrough and arrested people for corruption in the municipality.

"Mr Mashaba never said anything. Why? Nobody, not even Mr Herman Mashaba has the right to dictate to the Hawks how to do their work," Netshiunda said.

Mashaba responded that Ntlemeza had not actually answered the question if he had issued an instruction to stop the investigation of all City of Johannesburg cases.

"I don’t have to disclose my sources. Has he issued the instruction or not?" he asked.

He was not scared to institute private prosecutions and was in discussions with his legal team on whether or not to open a case against Ntlemeza for defeating the ends of justice.

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Read more on:    city of johannesburg  |  hawks  |  berning ntlemeza  |  herman mashaba  |  johannesburg  |  local government  |  corruption

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