OR Tambo Airport security company suspends 2 officers who allegedly accepted bribe

2019-01-02 09:18

The two security officers seen on a viral video soliciting an alleged bribe at an OR Tambo International Airport terminal have been suspended.

The security company, Securitas, said that "being advised of the incident, the company immediately suspended the security officers".

In a statement, the company that the pair would be subjected to a disciplinary inquiry on Thursday.

READ: Footage shows OR Tambo Airport security 'accepting' cash bribe

The security officers perform preliminary documentation screening at the airport to assist the airlines with the passport control process.

The women are seen in a video inspecting passports. Then one of them appears to take cash placed inside one of the passports. OR Tambo police told News24 on Monday that they could not comment on the incident until an investigation had been concluded.

Airport management says that the security company is contracted to Emirates airline and that it was, in this case, conducting the verification process.

"This process is done on behalf of airlines at the International Departures Hall prior to check-in, in order to eliminate unnecessary delays and queues at the Home Affairs Emigration desks. The Home Affairs desk is the final port-controlled area a passenger is subjected to after being checked in by the airline", said Bongiwe Pityi-Vokwana, general manager of the airport.

Pityi-Vokwana said that, "in accordance with the prescripts of both the International Civil Aviation Organisation and the South African Civil Aviation Authority, we will write to Emirates and ask it to advise how it will mitigate against this sort of incident in future. We will also ensure that a corrective action plan is submitted".

She said that the airport would also be reviewing the licensing conditions of the security company.

Pityi-Vokwana said that it was disturbing when those mandated to protect passengers and the integrity of a national key point betrayed the trust placed in them.

"Over the past year, we saw a number of our own security staff perform incredibly well in interdicting drug smuggling and other crimes. It’s therefore upsetting to see the integrity of security employees, especially those employed by contracted security companies licensed to various stakeholders within the airport ecosystem, damaged by the actions of a selfish few."

Pityi-Vokwana said that the airport would continue to act decisively in dealing with crime.

*This story has been updated to include the comments from the general manager of the airport.

Read more on:    or tambo international airport  |  johannesburg  |  crime  |  corruption
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