Mr Francois Beukman
Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Police National Parliament
PO Box 15
Cape Town 8000
INITIATION OF PROCEEDINGS FOR THE REMOVAL OF THE HEAD OF THE DIRECTORATE FOR PRIORITY CRIME I NVESTIGATION BY THE COMMITTEE OF THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY AS CONTEMPLATED I N SECTION 1 7DA(3)(4) READ WITH SECTION 1 7DA(5) OF THE SOUTH AFRICAN POLICE SERVICE ACT, 1 995 AS AMENDED
1. On 23 December 2014, I placed the Head of the DPCI, Lieutenant General Dramat on precautionary suspension with full pay and benefits after serious allegations of misconduct by Lieutenant General Dramat (“Dramat”) were brought to my attention. I had placed him on precautionary suspension in terms of the Public Service Act, the · Public Service Regulations, read with the Senior Management Handbook, after it was ,
brought to my attention that I could not place him on suspension pursuant to the provisions of section 17DA(2) because same had been struck down by the Constitutional Court on 27 November 2015 n the matter of Helen Suzman Foundation vs President of the Republic of South Africa and others (Case No: CCY07/14) and Hugh Glenister vs President of the Republic of South Africa and others (Case No: CCT09/14) and deleted from the SAPS Act.
2. On 9 January 2015 , the Helen Suzman Foundation (“HSF”) launched an urgent application in the High Court, Gauteng Division, Pretoria, seeing to review and set aside my decision to suspend Dramat, declaring the suspension invalid, unconstitutional and unlawful on grounds that I have no power to suspend Dramat in light of the deletion of section 17DA(2) from the SAPS Act by the Constitutional Court. The urgent application was heard on 15 January 2015 and postponed to 19 January 2015 for arqument. Judqement on the matter was handed down on 23 January 2015. .
The Court had declared Dramat’s suspension invalid and had set it aside. It also declared the appointment of Major-General Ntlemeza as Acting Head of the DPCI invalid and set it aside. I have since lodged an application for leave to appeal against the judgment and the orders made because I believe that another Court may come to a different conclusion. I do not wish to canvass the merits of the matter because it is currently subjudice. I will await the outcome of the appeal processes. Whilst I believe that I have the power to suspend the Head of the DPCI in the manner I did due to the oversight role I am constitutionally and statutorily required to play to hold the Head of the DPCI accountable, I am saddened by the fact that the serious allegations that are made against the Head of the DPCI have been obfuscated and obscured by the legal wrangling on whether or not I have the power to suspend him.
3. Until this legal issue is resolved on appeal, which is likely to take months, my hands to institute disciplinary proceedings against the Head of the DPCI remain tied.
4. It will not be in the interest of the DPCI, its Head and of the SAPS and the country as a whole for such serious allegations to linger too long against Dramat without steps being·taken to deal with them. To this end, I request you as the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee, to take steps in terms of section 17DA(3)(4) read with section 17DA(5) to initiate a parliamentary process for the removal of the Head of the DPCI on grounds of misconduct and that he is not fit and proper to hold that office.
5. The allegations that have been made against Dramat relate to the illegal rendition of Zimbabwean nationals who were unlawfully arrested by the members of the DPCI in Diepsloot, Johannesburg, and under falsified Home Affairs deportation documents, they were extradited to Zimbabwe though Beit Bridge border gate and handed over to the Zimbabwean police who tortured them. Two of these Zimbabwean nationals were ultimately killed by the Zimbabwean police.
Witness statements and other potential witnesses place Dramat and Sibiya at the centre of these unlawful renditions, and that they occurred with Dramat’s knowledge and approval. After the mission of handover of these Zimbabwean nationals to the Zimbabwean police was completed, the allegation is that Dramat addressed the DPCI officers who carried the operation and he thanked them for the job well done, and informed them that they should keep it a secret. There can be no doubt that if indeed these renditions occurred in the manner described or any other manner unlawful and in contravention of the South African laws and its international obligations, Dramat as the Head should be held responsible and therefore liable for these atrocious acts.
6. This is in keeping with the principle of accountability which our constitution and statutes impose on senior officials and executives. Although the alleged incident occurred in 2010, DPCI had taken no steps to investigate and bring to book the perpetrators.
7. The evidence will be made available to you should you require it which will include the witnesses statements; records, and including the IPID report. In reading the witness statements; other records, and including the IPID report itself, you will without doubt realise that the conclusion of the IPID report is not supported by the very analysis of the evidence in the report and the statements themselves. It may even give one the impression that the conclusion was altered without the body of the report being altered to justify the conclusion.
8. All the discrepancies, and the seriousness of the allegations call for the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee to initiate proceedings in terms of section 17DA(3)(4)(5) and call upon Dramat to answer to these allegations before the Portfolio Committee without delay.
Mr NPT Nhleko