Zondo Commission: Lawyer says Phahlane implicated in matters he was 'not involved in'

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Khomotso Phahlane.
Khomotso Phahlane.
News24/File
  • Former acting national police commissioner General Khomotso Phahlane says allegations made against him at the state capture inquiry are "baseless". 
  • Phahlane's legal representative read his affidavit into the record on Friday.  
  • The lawyer said Phahlane was implicated in matters he was not involved in.

Former acting national police commissioner General Khomotso Phahlane says former Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) head Robert McBride in 2016 wanted to band together because they were both "under attack". 

Phahlane has been implicated in the capture commission, chaired by Acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

On Friday, Phahlane's counsel Johan Eksteen read his affidavit into the record to counter McBride's testimony.

He told the commission that before 2016, Phahlane had never met McBride but was surprised when he met him outside his home in Sable Hills Waterfront Estate.

According to Eksteen, McBride had told Phahlane that "the reason he was there was just to come and talk to him because he is also of the view that General Phahlane is like him under attack".

McBride was suspended from IPID at the time, he said.

READ | Rogue cops, corruption and patronage: McBride testifies about 'rotten' SAPS at state capture inquiry

He claimed that McBride said: "The people do not want us good people, and they will do everything in their power to fight us."

Eksteen added that McBride had also warned him to be "careful" of then police minister Nathi Nhleko and former Hawks head Berning Ntlemeza. He said McBride offered his assistance to Phahlane, saying they should work together.

When McBride appeared at the commission, he told the commission about an IPID investigation into the relationship Phahlane had with service providers, News24 previously reported.

McBride said:

The issue is that one of the service providers had assisted in the funding of the building of Mr Phahlane's house; the provider was involved in forensic equipment. A motor car dealer provided vehicles to the Phahlane family and other police officers. Later on, they would claim it was sponsorships, even though they were on and insured by the Phahlane name.

Warrant

A task team McBride formed upon his return to IPID in October 2016 obtained a search warrant to Phahlane's home which found a sound system installed by one of the service providers.

He further explained how the task team's investigation led to a counter-investigation within the police service aimed at protecting corrupt senior officials.

"A complaint was initiated within the police service by Phahlane that there was a security breach at his house and that his life was in danger."

ALSO READ | Sitole knew about Phahlane's activities – IPID's McBride

He then directed that a team should be constructed to investigate the security breach.

Phahlane contacted a general from the North West, McBride explained. A team from the North West, led by General Ntebo Mabula, was then moved to Gauteng and was based in Arcadia, Tshwane, to conduct a counter-investigation that targeted IPID officials investigating senior SAPS officials, the former IPID head charged.

But in his affidavit, Phahlane said the team was appointed by then acting divisional commissioner of crime intelligence after a "threat assessment" had been conducted.

He said it was "factually incorrect" for McBride to allege that he was involved in the appointment of the North West team.

Phahlane's lawyer, Eksteen, also told the commission that his client was "surprised" that IPID investigator Matthews Sesoko had dragged him in the so-called rendition matter.  

He said allegations levelled against Phahlane were "false and baseless".

"… never was General Phahlane involved in any investigations or even implicated by any persons. This clearly shows the maliciousness that IPID ... Mr Sesoko and Mr McBride have against General Phahlane. They want to implicate him in matters which he is not even involved in," he said. 

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