Parliament passes Hawks Bill

The SAPS Amendment Bill was given the green light by the National Assembly.

Police. EWN

CAPE TOWN - The South African Police Service (SAPS) Amendment Bill was given the green light by the National Assembly on Wednesday.

The amendments come after the Constitutional Court ruled that the Hawks were not sufficiently protected from external interference.

The case was brought by businessman Hugh Glenister, who has once again threatened to go to the court.

He believes Parliament's amendments are not sufficient.

The bill makes it clear that the Hawks will remain a unit of SAPS.

However, Members of Parliament (MPs) adopted changes which will see different procedures for hiring and firing the unit's head.

The Hawks will also report to Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa and not the national police commissioner.

Officials argue that the bill provides the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigations with the adequate structural and operational independence to perform its functions.

Meanwhile, the Democratic Alliance and Freedom Front Plus rejected the bill saying the matter should go back to the top court.

The Constitutional Court gave Parliament 18 months to amend the legislation.