Phahlane protects the Hawks

Khomotso Phahlane dismissed a DA’s MP’s notion that the Hawks are operating like a 'hit squad'.

Acting SAPS Commissioner Khomotso Phahlane. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Acting National Police Commissioner Khomotso Phahlane has dismissed an opposition Member of Parliament (MPs) notion that the Hawks is operating like a "hit squad".

The specialised crime fighting unit has come under fire lately because of a public spat with Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and claims by the Public Protector that she is under investigation.

Speaking in Parliament today Phahlane said the unit is free from political interference and should be allowed to operate without fear or favour.

He was responding to Democratic Alliance MPs Zak Mbhele's concerns.

"I was extremely reluctant to see any further progression of what I can only characterise as a hit squad [modus operandi] to some parts on how they have conducted themselves."

Phahlane assured the police portfolio committee that Hawks investigators were doing their job well.

"I will not agree with the notion of a hit squad because if there was such, we would not fold our arms and become spectators, it would be required of us to act, because we are all to respect the laws of our country."