‘There was no need for Phiyega to testify’

Phiyega’s legal team has argued there was no need for her to testify at the Claassen Inquiry.

FILE: Suspended National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega listens to representation by Advocate Dali Mpofu during closing arguments at the inquiry into her fitness to hold office in Centurion on 1 June 2016. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Riah Phiyega's legal team has argued there was no need for the suspended national police commissioner to testify at the Claassen Inquiry.

Phiyega is facing an inquiry into her fitness to hold office, in relation to her conduct during the mass shooting in Marikana in 2012 which left 34 people dead.

LISTEN: Last day of the inquiry into Phiyega's fitness for office.

Evidence leaders have criticised Phiyega's decision not to testify, saying she had the opportunity to clear her name.

Advocate Mahlape Sello says much has been made of Phiyega not testifying before the inquiry, but she says Phiyega is under no obligation to do so as she testified at the Farlam Commission of Inquiry on the Marikana shooting.

Sello has also argued that public order policing in Marikana fell directly under the provincial commissioner, and Phiyega would have been overstepping her position by taking over.

Phiyega has been accused of failing to ask pertinent questions about the police's operation and failing to take control of the situation in order to prevent bloodshed.