Probe into top cops ‘carried out according to guidelines’

Parliament's police portfolio committee has defended the manner in which it handled the SAPS probe.

Picture: SAPS

CAPE TOWN - An unprecedented probe into the conduct of senior South African Police Service (SAPS) officials was carried out in terms of the legislature's rules and guidelines, insisted Francois Beukman, the chairperson of Parliament's police portfolio committee.

But suspended national police commissioner Riah Phiyega holds a different view and has threatened to take legal action over the committee's findings.

She has reportedly sent a letter to National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete, stating the committee contravened parliamentary rules in the way it had treated her.

"If the matter has been referred to the office of the speaker, of course it is up to Parliament to deal with it and we will await the outcome," responded Beukman.

Members of Parliament (MPs) concluded last week that Phiyega should face an inquiry in connection with the issuing of controversial media statements by the board of commissioners and senior officials.

The statements were seen as an attempt to influence President Jacob Zuma on whether to take action against Phiyega over the Marikana tragedy.

The report also concluded that the country's provincial police commissioners had embarrassed the service by publicly declaring their support for Phiyega.

MPs have recommended police minister Nkosinathi Nhleko consider appointing boards of inquiry into their conduct.

Phiyega was suspended in October pending the outcome of an investigation into her fitness to hold office as recommended by the Farlam Commission of Inquiry.