We will not be intimidated into stopping investigations of 10 SAPS generals - McBride

The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) will not be intimidated into stopping its investigations of several generals of the South African Police Services (SAPS), the directorate's head Robert McBride says.

McBride was responding to Police Minister Bheki Cele's request to Parliament that allegations of unethical behaviour against him be investigated.

"We will not be intimidated into stopping our investigations against 10 SAPS generals, which is the real motive behind the actions of our suspects. We will release more information in due course," McBride said in a statement on Tuesday.

"We presume that these allegations are the same ones made by one of our investigators, Cedrick Nkabinde, who was offered a senior post by the SAPS in return for falsely implicating the Head of Investigations, Mr Matthews Sesoko, Task Team Leader Innocent Khuba and IPID Executive Director Robert McBride in wrongdoing."

According to parliamentary papers released on Monday, Cele's letter was tabled to the National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete on July 6.

Mbete has referred the matter to the Portfolio Committee on Police for consideration and for a report.

News24 reported in May that two IPID investigators and a vetting officer allegedly conspired to sabotage the organisation's investigations into former acting national police commissioner, Lieutenant General Khomotso Phahlane.

Sources close to the investigation previously told News24 that the three were allegedly offered positions by the SAPS to falsely implicate McBride.

The officers were part of IPID's task team investigating allegations of corruption against Phahlane.

News24 learnt that they were apparently offered "cushy" positions - that of brigadier in Crime Intelligence and detective in the SAPS.

In a letter seen by News24 at the time, which had allegedly been written by Nkabinde and which was addressed to Cele, it was said that McBride was involved in "unethical conduct".

The letter claimed that McBride allowed forensic investigator Paul O'Sullivan to spearhead an investigation into Phahlane, together with his assistant Sarah Jane Trent.

In response to Cele's request, McBride said on Tuesday that he had met with Cele on two occasions and brought up the allegations against him.

"I also indicated to the minister that all the investigators in the task team have refuted Nkabinde's allegations as false. I was never asked to respond to any of the allegations or to give my side of the story," he said.

"I have stated before that these allegations are nothing more than an attempt to shield senior police officers from investigation and to scupper such investigations. The IPID has documents and recordings to refute any such allegations."

He added that since the investigations began, the IPID had uncovered overwhelming evidence of corruption against more senior police officers.

"It is not surprising that there will be attempts to torpedo our investigations. What is at stake is the IPID's operational and structural independence."

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