Hawks deny political meddling
The Hawks brushed off reports that its new head is an ally of former crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli.
JOHANNESBURG - The Hawks have strongly denied claims of political meddling in ongoing investigations following the suspension of their head Anwa Dramat, and allegations that the acting head is purging Dramat's allies.
But an investigation by police watchdog the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) reportedly cleared both Dramat and Gauteng Hawks chief Shadrack Sibiya.
Dramat's suspension is now being challenged in court by the Helen Suzman Foundation, which believes the police minister did not have the lawful authority to take such a decision.
The police's Hangwani Mulaudzi says these decisions were not political.
"We have a responsibility to deal with crime and we won't be misdirected by anyone."
Mulaudzi also brushed off reports that Ntlemeza is an ally of former crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli.
"The matter was never discussed and the team that is working on that case will continue with its good work."
Sibiya is challenging his suspension in court tomorrow while section head Leslie Maluleke will learn his fate as Ntlemeza studies his representations.
GAUTENG HAWKS CHIEF WORRIED ABOUT MORALE
Sibiya yesterday raised concerns about morale among the unit's staff.
He secured a Labour Court interdict while section head Maluleke is expected to give reasons why he shouldn't be suspended later today.
His lawyer Victor Nkhwashu said the Gauteng Hawks chief was concerned about the effectiveness of the crime fighting unit in his absence.
"He was worried in that he was making a meaningful contribution to the fight against crime."
Nkhwashu says the suspensions have already affected moral in the Gauteng office and Sibiya hopes to re-inspire confidence as he returns from leave on Monday.
The Hawks have two days to submit detailed reasons why Sibiya should be suspended.
Sibiya was the former head of the now disbanded Scorpions.