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First on EWN: Suspended Ipid boss wanted top cop investigated

In a letter to the police minister, McBride accused Phiyega of enabling a corrupt environment to thrive.

FILE. Suspended Ipid head Robert McBride chats to 702's Xolani Gwala in studio about his suspension and the functionality of the police watchdog. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

PRETORIA - Eyewitness News can today reveal that just two months before he was suspended, Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) head Robert McBride recommended that National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega be investigated for corruption and racketeering.

In a letter to Police Minister Nathi Nhleko and obtained by EWN, McBride accuses Phiyega of enabling a corrupt environment to thrive because of her failure to act against KwaZulu-Natal Commissioner Mamonye Ngobeni.

Ngobeni is allegedly involved in a corrupt relationship with politically-connected businessman Thoshan Panday.

McBride was suspended in March for allegedly altering a report into the rendition of five Zimbabwean suspects in 2010, a charge he has consistently denied.

He and two subordinates are accused of changing the report to exonerate senior Hawks officials, but he believes he is being targeted for leading sensitive investigations.

In January, McBride sent the letter to the police minister, recommending that Phiyega be suspended to allow Ipid to investigate alleged misconduct as well as several criminal charges against her.

He claims Phiyega not only interfered in high-profile cases involving senior police officers, but failed to act against them - despite there being strong evidence to support the allegations.

The cases involve corruption of more than R75 million, a bribery scandal of R2 million, as well as plans to murder police officers tasked with investigating these cases.

McBride says the police commissioner's conduct may amount to racketeering because instead of dealing with allegations of corruption, she rather associates herself with such behavior.

He says at best, Phiyega is guilty of dereliction of duty, but at worst she is an active participant in enabling corrupt activities in the police service.

McBride personally delivered the letter to the police minister in January this year, but heard nothing more about it.

Instead, he was suspended two months later.

Click here to read McBride's letter to Nhleko.