The Committee met with senior management of the SA Police Service (SAPS) and the National Commissioner to be briefed on the performance, targets and projected expenditure for the Crime Intelligence programme. Members were informed of the purpose of the programme, its strategic objectives and what comprised the programme. Performance indicators and actual performance were also highlighted for the previous financial year and the coming medium term, along with the estimated expenditure for the programme for 2014/15 and 2015/16.
Following this brief presentation, the Committee engaged in a rigorous discussion on a range of policing matters, with those exclusive to the programme under the spotlight. Given the recent xenophobic attacks in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), Members raised questions on these concerning events, asking if Crime Intelligence had pre-empted the attacks because intelligence was a key element in this space. They asked about the capacity of SAPS to deal with the occurrences and if Crime Intelligence was supported by SAPS, or if there had been problems with deployment, whether there was a link between what the Zulu King had said and the attacks, and what the specific drivers of the attack were. The Committee sought an assurance that there was an intelligence footprint and informants in the necessary hotspots.
Another key issue of discussion was the importance of leadership in the Crime Intelligence environment. Members wanted to know when the head of the division would be made permanent, progress on the Richard Mdluli and Chris Ngcobo matters in terms of disciplinary proceedings, and the vetting of leadership. They referred to the fact that the Crime Intelligence division was under the Office of the National Commissioner, and asked if this affected the investigations of the Hawks, which relied on SAPS intelligence.
Other questions were raised about performance indicators, how Crime Intelligence dealt with deleting information off the equipment of journalists, coordination between Crime Intelligence and the State Security Agency (SSA), and the integration of Public Order Policing and Crime Intelligence. The Committee wanted to know what Crime Intelligence defined as the three biggest threats currently in SA, and the capacity of crime intelligence and SAPS to act on illegal land invasions, as it was much better to prevent this than react to it. Members questioned the capacity of crime intelligence to deal with ISIS so that the country did not become vulnerable in this regard. What were the reasons for the increase in cash-in-transit robberies, credit card fraud, public violence and mall robberies, even though the budget had increased? The possible downgrading of qualifications was raised, as well as progress with the new crop of graduates, with an ingrained ethos for the new organisational culture.
SAPS said it was investigating its own members and conducting lifestyle audits when they were seen to be living lavish lifestyles which could not be supported by their salaries.
In the afternoon session, the Committee sought assurance that steps were being taken to address capacity weaknesses and to provide the necessary skills in critical areas of work. Concern was expressed about the budget process and the allocations between the Hawks and the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DCPI). A project -- the Introduction of Uniform Investigation -- was being run with the approval of the National Commissioner, where cases that were not so serious would be taken away and allocated to Uniform Investigation. This would be done so that only the serious cases would be prioritised, and senior investigators could deal with them. Trial-ready dockets were explained.
The Committee heard that capacity to deal with cyber crime was in the process of being developed. Across all investigations, there were cyber crime processes, although figures were not currently available. The SAPS also received assistance from the Anti-Corruption Hotline. There had been very positive engagement with the public, and public acceptance was growing.
Members expressed concern that the trial-ready case docket rate increases were far too low. They asked what was meant ‘successfully terminated’, and why trial-ready dockets were put in terms of percentages and not numbers. They wanted to know what had happened to the detective who was paying to prevent dockets from going to court, and what had happened to the station commander in this regard. Was there clear agreement between the DPCI, Hawks and Detectives on what dockets would go where? They queried the low new indicator targets in relation to cyber crime, given the threats in the country. Why had targets for the investigation of serious crime been lowered? When it came to rewards, who determined how much they were, and who determined if a reward should be offered?
A DA Member accused the SAPS of absolutely ignoring the court order regarding the unlawful suspension of General Dramat. The SAPS was told that they had treated the court with ‘complete contempt’.
Chairperson's opening remarks
The Chairperson said the Committee had taken note of the developments over the weekend, especially in Alexandra Township, and welcomed the steps taken by the SA Police Service (SAPS) to track down the perpetrators involved in the unfortunate death of Emmanuel Sithole. The SAPS had done a good job, and he congratulated the detectives and investigating teams, as well as the community, because community information had played a huge role.
When the Committee looked at the detectives’ programme later today, a big theme would be questions around how to involve the community to increase detection rates. The Committee also acknowledged the programme announced by the National Commissioner to deal with the xenophobic violence, which would be driven and managed by the Civilian Secretariat on Police (CSP). Next week, when the Committee met with the Secretariat, this would be an important focus to get the details of the programme. Community involvement was vitally important along with the Community Policing Forums and their role in the programme. The Committee also needed an update on the proceedings with the Western Cape Provincial Commissioner in terms of who the Acting Commissioner would be, and the current labour relations regime in SAPS, so that the Committee was satisfied appropriate steps had been taken.
Briefing by SAPS on 2014-2019 Strategic Plan and 2015/16 Annual Performance Plan and Budget
Programme 4: Crime Intelligence
Maj-Gen Bongiwe Zulu, SAPS Acting Divisional Commissioner: Crime Intelligence, said the purpose of the programme was to manage crime intelligence and analyse crime information, and provide technical support for investigations and crime prevention operations. The strategic objective was to gather, correlate, coordinate and analyse intelligence. The crime intelligence programme was comprised of crime intelligence operations, and intelligence and information management.
He explained the performance indicators and actual performance for the previous financial years and the year under review, as well as the estimated performance as per the medium term targets for the two sub-programmes.
Lt-Gen Stefan Schutte, SAPS Deputy National Commissioner: Resource Management, took the Committee through the estimated expenditure of the programme for 2014/15 and 2015/16. He commented that the programme constituted high compensation costs, while operational costs were largely related to fuel, oil, travel and subsistence as generated by personnel. It was important to note the Secret Service Account was not part of Vote 32 of the Police.
The Chairperson highlighted the importance of leadership matters to the Committee, and so on that point, he asked when the appointment of a permanent head of Crime Intelligence would be made. The post was important in terms of governance of the SAPS. He said that Crime Intelligence was under the Office of the National Commissioner because of the need for a “deep clean” to gain stability, and asked whether this process was over and when there would be stability in terms of the organogram.
Ms Riah Phiyega, National Police Commissioner, said that the internal processes of SAPS would be followed in the case of the Western Cape Provincial Commissioner. She had been in consultation with the Western Cape Premier, as required by the legislation. The SAPS internal processes and regulations would be fully followed in this regard and to this effect, all those involved had been suspended and, as per the prescripts, internal investigations would need to be undertaken into employee conduct, as there was a distinction between that and the external criminal process. SAPS Human Resources was engaging with independent investigators for assistance, and it was hoped there would be compliance with transversal timelines. The matter would also be further looked into through the establishment of a board. With the crime intelligence unit under the Office of the National Commissioner, the portfolio would remain under her control for sometime because of operational thrusts and issues requiring strategic care. With the Acting Head of Crime Intelligence, the position would not be filled permanently until issue of the previous head was resolved.
Mr Z Mbhele (DA) questioned if the Crime Intelligence division had foreseen the recent and current waves of xenophobic violence both in Johannesburg earlier this year, and now revived, and the current xenophobic violence in KZN, because Crime Intelligence would be a key aspect in this environment. If the division had not foreseen the violence, why was this so? If the division had foreseen the violence, he wanted to understand what had been done to pre-empt it in terms of the mandate of the division. What was the current capacity of Crime Intelligence to conduct information gathering at the domestic level in terms of land invasions, especially in the Western Cape and Gauteng, where it was currently being experienced. It was much better to prevent land being invaded than having to get a court order for people to leave. He also asked what the capacity of the division was to deal with ISIS, and ensuring the country did not become vulnerable in that respect. This was in light of a young teenage girl from Cape Town who had recently been apprehended en route to joining ISIS.
Ms Phiyega said that, in terms of ISIS, there were areas of specialisation within Crime Intelligence, and the spearhead in this case was National Intelligence, because of the global nature of the matter.
Maj-Gen Zulu said that immediately after statements were made in the media about what the King had said, intelligence had started tasking all the provinces to monitor the situation. Provinces were submitting information on anything linked to the xenophobic attacks. Intelligence was also receiving SMSs, which were being checked. Intelligence was also working with the State Security Agency (SSA) on the matter. At times there would be knowledge of what was planned, but there was not enough police deployment which explained the Public Order Policing (POP) unit coming from Gauteng. Intelligence was providing the information.
On the issue of ISIS, this matter had been discussed with another Joint Committee on Intelligence, because it involved counter-terrorism. In the incident in question, crime intelligence was part of it.
Ms M Molebatsi (ANC) asked if the General had indicated to the Committee that the first time intelligence had anticipated there was going to be xenophobic attacks, was only after what the King had said.
Mr P Groenewald (FF+) thought that what the General had said was very unfortunate in that she was actually confirming to the Committee that the xenophobic attacks, up until now, had been directly because of what the King had said. What she was actually saying was that follow ups had been made only after the King had made the statements. What steps had been taken before that time? Had there been any indications before the speech of the King, that there was going to be xenophobic attacks? If there were, what were these indications? The General needed to understand the implications of what she had just said.
Ms D Kohler Barnard (DA) asked if the crime intelligence reports were as good as claimed -- that crime intelligence knew from the moment the King had made those xenophobic statements up until today, and could predict with a high degree of accuracy where the outbreaks would be, when the looting would start and the rampage would take place, and the fact that KZN had enough police but more were called in from Gauteng. Did this speak to mismanagement by the provincial police commissioner? Why were these officers flown in from another province? What was the point of crime intelligence doing their jobs, while the supporting units did not? It seemed that crime intelligence was to be congratulated and whoever had failed miserably to send in sufficient police on the ground should actually be held to account for the deaths.
Mr L Ramatlakane (ANC) thought the response would be in two parts, and now Members were running without hearing the other part of the response.
Mr Groenewald noted that Maj-Gen Zulu had said there was a direct link between what the King had said in his speech and the xenophobic attacks – if this was so, would criminal charges be instituted against the King?
Ms Phiyega informed the Committee that SA had a National Security Strategy, where a number of agencies sat to scan and identify the key security threats to the country. One of the key threats was related to territorial integrity, legal migration and anti-foreigner sentiment. All security agencies were looking at anti-foreigner sentiment and this was something which had been around, and had not just started last week. As a result, collectively there was mapping of where the foreigners were in the country, so that any anti-foreigner sentiment could be tracked, monitored and responded to. This was where footprint came in. SAPS was also working with other departments, like Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA), Home Affairs and the municipalities in the area. Where there was a violent outburst, the work of SAPS was largely informed by intelligence to react to restore stability, and there was such capability. The arrests made in Gauteng showed that SAPS had the capability to intervene and do their work. It was a threat that was continuously tracked and monitored in terms of hotspots. A province like KZN had many spaza shops and small enterprises and it was known that this was a threat, so it was tracked and monitored as part of police planning. The King had gone on record yesterday to correct his sentiments, and SAPS was no judge on this – the job of SAPS was to respond. With issues of deployment, it was the duty of the National Commissioner to ensure national units were there to support the provinces and work with the municipalities to ensure incidents were sufficiently responded to, and this had been done successfully.
Ms Kohler Barnard said she was a bit confused. The Acting Head of crime intelligence had said crime intelligence was spot on, but there was insufficient police to deal with the issues crime intelligence had identified. Now the National Commissioner was saying SAPS did a wonderful, resourceful and splendid job. Either SAPS did a great job and what everyone watched and saw was a Hollywood movie, or SAPS, in fact, did not do a job and were not there in sufficient numbers to quell the violence. Also, the King did not go on record to correct his sentiment at all – he did not own up to it or admit to having said it. He simply declared a war on anyone carrying out xenophobic attacks so there had been two declarations of war within the space of two weeks.
Mr Groenewald thought what was being discussed was very important. He asked the National Commissioner if there was a direct link between what the King had said and the xenophobic attacks, according to SAPS intelligence.
Ms Molebatsi asked if it was true, that what Maj-Gen Zulu was saying was that intelligence had not anticipated attacks until the King had made his statements.
Mr Ramatlakane wanted to know if the explanation of Maj-Gen Zulu was accepted. Was there a programme or command with respect to this particular area of deployment? Was there a problem of deployment because if there was not, additional capacity would not be needed? For him, the issue was not so much about the message of the King, and it was probably inappropriate for Members to harp on about that issue. What was being dealt with, for him, was the ability and capacity of crime intelligence to neutralise the threat, wherever it came from.
Commissioner Phiyega said there may be 11 000 SAPS members in the province, but the business of police had to continue. The unit concerned was POP, where particular numbers were deployed in each province while there was a national back up capacity. If something occurred in a province where more water cannonsm were needed, it would have to come from another province from spare support capacity. This was not a question of command, but of scale, and SAPS had been successful in stabilising KZN. As the accounting officer of SAPS, all she could say was that where there was instability, SAPS dealt with it, as had been done in KZN.
Mr Groenewald interjected to say the National Commissioner could not say, when it came to crime intelligence, that what the King had said was none of her business. If this was the case, it showed SAPS did not carry out any crime intelligence, and this was unacceptable.
Ms Molebatsi asked about the stability of the Crime Intelligence division. Since the suspension of Richard Mdluli, many things had happened, so was there stability now?
Commissioner Phiyega reported that there was stability in crime intelligence, and this was visible in the successes achieved by detectives and in the space of POP, where a lot of inroads had been made. There were also relations which had taken the division forward. Stability was also seen in the financial environment. When she came into the Department, there had been a disclaimer audit opinion, but now there were qualified financial opinions. This immense growth showed a lot had been done. A lot of vacancies had been filled, both in the provinces and at the national office, so the division was out of “intensive care” and into a healthy space.
Ms L Mabija (ANC) sought an explanation on the reasons for adding performance indicators. How did Crime Intelligence deal with members who deleted information from the equipment of journalists as seen during the recent xenophobic attacks and at other crime scenes?
Maj-Gen Zulu explained the indicators were added to measure their performance and operatives in their contribution to normal policing. It also helped to separate the operations and products assisting crime intelligence and detectives, so there was less of a “fruit salad.” The emphasis for both new indicators was on measurement.
National Commissioner Phiyega said that with journalists, SAPS had clear protocols for conduct and the issue of taking cameras from journalists and destroying their photographs was certainly not one of the policing operational requirements. SAPS had engaged with the SA National Editors Forum (SANEF) through a memorandum of engagement, and this issue was being discussed. It had been requested that SAPS look at sharpening protocols in such isolated incidents.
Mr Ramatlakane noted that Crime Intelligence was one area that had received many injuries in the past, so he wanted to understand the stability of the division today and how far its turnaround strategy was in terms of implementation. He asked about the capacity, footprint and understanding of communities in terms of language. This would underscore the neutralisation of crimes, which was linked to the quality of information. He wanted to understand the relationship between communication and quality information. He also wanted to understand what two indicators meant, -- the number of enquiries investigated and the number of ad hoc operations conducted, and how their medium term targets were reached. What did it really mean, when the estimated performance and medium term targets for the percentage of physical security threat assessments finalised per request was 100%? Was this planning for something or planning for nothing? He also wanted to understand how the baselines had been developed for certain targets and specifically why the medium term target and estimated performance for the percentage of Interpol case files closed was 70%? Were there real numbers for this indicator?
National Commissioner Phiyega indicated a lot of work had been done to fill the vacancies and sharpen the presence in provinces, clusters and stations.
Maj-Gen Zulu added that 24 senior officials had been appointed at the provincial and national level. These were the provincial and section heads. With the cluster commanders, 34 had been appointed in the provinces. These were Crime Intelligence cluster commanders responsible for ensuring there was intelligence at the cluster level, while servicing the particular stations within the cluster. With the other levels, she could not currently provide all the figures but in the first level, 225 posts had been filled in the second phase, another 200 and 20-odd were in the process of being advertised, and others had already been filled. In terms of communities and languages, crime intelligence made sure the people knowing the language were deployed because if someone did not know the language, people became suspicious. For example, those speaking the language were sent to help in Marikana, so these matters were taken into consideration with deployments.
Mr Groenewald asked what was going on with the appointment of a permanent head of Crime Intelligence. When had it been picked up by the division that the country would have xenophobic attacks and what steps had been taken to prevent it. What was the coordination between crime intelligence and the State Security Agency (SSA), because he got the impression that crime intelligence would say a certain problem was that of the SSA. He had heard from informants that there was not good coordination. He also wanted an update on what SAPS saw as the three biggest security threats to deal with presently.
National Commissioner Phiyega said that in terms of the National Strategic Intelligence Act, as intelligence agencies, reports on assessments of intelligence were required to be produced annually, so the agencies worked together to produce the national security strategy which was then taken through different avenues and adopted. On the crime side of inputs, this led to national intelligence estimates to which SAPS contributed through the specialised side of crime intelligence. Historic and current aspects and trends of intelligence were taken into account in terms of how to actually look at a security threat assessment. As the national management forum, threat assessments were continuously received by scoping certain areas -- for example, the taxi industry, if there was taxi violence to be able to deal with it then. Elements of organised crime were looked at, churches being used, illicit mining etc. This was a very structured process of threat assessment, and it was well documented and informative. There were a number of big security threats. For example, issues of violent community protests, cyber threats, territorial integrity, anti-foreigner sentiments and border management were all considered top threats. The Committee could be provided with written input on the top threats as well.
Mr J Maake (ANC) understood that Crime Intelligence operatives did not go to court to give evidence but instead gathered information and handed it over to the police to make arrests and even take the culprits to court. Perhaps SAPS did not always act on information received and there was nothing done about it, so how did the crime intelligence division evaluate its successes?
Maj-Gen Zulu said that although crime intelligence did not take people to court, it supported the criminal justice system by providing information to support the work of detectives in making arrests.
Ms Kohler Barnard highlighted the increases in cash-in-transit robberies, credit card fraud, increases in public violence and mall robberies and the extremely concerning three-year trend outlined to the Committee in preparation for dealing with the budget by the Institute for Security Studies (ISS). All actions/outputs were down by considerable percentages, but the budget increased year on year. She sought an explanation for this and why it seemed Crime Intelligence did not have knowledge of the xenophobic attacks, otherwise SAPS would have been proactive and prevented these attacks and the incalculable damage it had done to SA’s image in terms of tourism and investment.
She wanted a date for when the internal disciplinary hearing of Richard Mdluli would be held, and exactly how long he had been on fully paid suspension. Disciplinary processes were supposed to be dealt with within three months, yet it was now more than two years. She also wanted to know what was happening with Chris Ngcobo and his suspension. How far was SAPS with integrating the crime intelligence function and the public order policing unit – were the two working in silos as previously the case, or had they come together? She knew of incidents when patrol cars drove unknowingly through uprisings and ended up shooting to save their own lives – they should have been informed by crime intelligence. Did the National Commissioner’s decision to downgrade the qualifications of provincial heads of crime intelligence -- where only a matric was needed for an over R1 million per year job – speak to the drop in production of crime intelligence overall? Where was SAPS in the process of vetting – did anybody in crime intelligence have security clearance?
Regarding cash-in-transit robberies, Commissioner Phiyega said SAPS was working very closely with organisations such as the SA Banking Risk Information Centre (SABRIC), but it was a trend where there had been great improvement.. Joint operations allowed for the dots to be connected in this area through leveraging capacity. Progress had been made in dealing with this crime.
With the downgrading of qualifications, the SAPS Act had made room for a transforming SA to ensure the National Commissioner was empowered to deal with extenuating circumstances and respond accordingly to assist the Service. As integration was done, a number of integrated members of the Service may not have had the degrees and qualifications required, but they had been in the environment for a very long time and this experience needed to be acknowledged. The Act empowered her to revise processes if the net cast did not secure the right people. As a result of this, a lot of the integrated people were sitting in the intelligence and protection service space and these were people who had skills and knowledge. If she could widen the net to ensure SAPS benefited from skills and experience, she would do so within the prescripts of the Act. By widening the net, the right people with the requisite skills and experience were found.
Vetting was an issue which, at times, would stand out like a sore thumb. For example, at some point the Star newspaper had written an article that the Head of Crime Intelligence was not vetted, but SAPS had repeated to them that the Head of Crime Intelligence had been double vetted – top secret and secret. SAPS had been threatened that the story would be published unless the vetting certificate was revealed. She found this very testing, but the leadership of Crime Intelligence had been vetted – this she could assure the Committee.
Maj-Gen Zulu added that there were many intelligence-driven arrests stemming from prior information received. There was also work with detectives to track the criminals until they were arrested.
National Commissioner Phiyega responded on the Mdluli matter, saying he had been recharged by the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), so he would be back in court. With the disciplinary case, SAPS was in touch with his lawyers to discuss the resumption of disciplinary processes, and the response from the lawyers was now awaited. Two sessions of discussions had already been held.
Mr Groenewald asked if there was a timeframe for when the lawyers would need to come back to SAPS, because if he were a lawyer he would do everything he could to delay proceedings.
National Commissioner Phiyega responded that SAPS had expressed the need for speed, but with such processes, not everything was in one person’s hands. SAPS were trying their best.
Ms Kohler Barnard found it totally unacceptable that an issue that had gone on for two and a half years was still sitting. A court order was needed to order the National Commissioner to do what she was supposed to do all along, which was hold a disciplinary hearing which ran quite separately from the court processes. To tell the Committee that private lawyers were basically delaying the police was ridiculous. She believed there should be a date set and if he was not there, that he be found guilty in abstentia. Would the process be waited out until the contract expired so that Mdluli got a fat pension at the end of it? This was what she believed was happening here.
Mr Groenewald thought it was important that the Committee was given the details, because without it, the impression was created that SAPS were dragging their feet to favour the accused. Surely there were timeframes with the disciplinary procedures, where the accused had a certain time in which to provide whatever documents were needed. He wanted an indication of specific timeframes and what disciplinary code defined the whole process. This specific detail was needed.
National Commissioner Phiyega reiterated the charges against Mdluli had been served and the first round of disciplinary processes had been established. At that point the matter had been postponed. There had been a lot of hold ups with the legal processes, because there were labour court issues still pending and criminal court processes which had recently been reinstated. SAPS had engaged Mdluli’s lawyers and it was hoped that the disciplinary process would be resumed soon.
The Chairperson noted that this matter had been included in the Committee’s Budgetary Review and Recommendations Report (BRRR) last year, so maybe the National Commissioner could compile a two-page document outlining the process and then in the Committee’s next BRRR, to be completed on 6 May 2015, SAPS management could be asked to fast-track the process and provide the Committee with a written report every three months on the progress. He understood the labour-related and legal processes, but from the perspective of the Committee, stable leadership was crucial and so there needed to be a permanent head of crime intelligence as soon as possible. This environment affected a lot of issues, so this was important.
National Commissioner Phiyega agreed with this and said it would be done. On the Chris Ngcobo issue, she noted that it had been concluded and a report would be received.
Mr Maake asked if Members expected Crime Intelligence to have known that the Zulu King would make the xenophobic utterances which some had said sparked the recent wave -- did they expect Crime Intelligence to know everything? How could crime intelligence have foreseen the misunderstanding of a statement?
Mr Mbhele clarified that when he went to Chatsworth last Wednesday and visited a safety camp there, along with other party colleagues, one Zimbabwean man relayed his experience where three groups of between 50 and 100 men came around to the houses. They knew exactly where foreign nationals were staying, bashed the doors down and gave them one hour to pack up what they could, and leave. Such an attack spoke to planning and communication in and around the area, so he assumed that crime intelligence relied heavily on informants in communities. Somebody would have received a phone call, SMS or WhatsApp to know that this was being planned. Where attacks were planned, he would expect that crime intelligence had an ear on the ground – this was the perspective which informed his question, not what the King had said.
The Chairperson noted that with the issues around the xenophobic outbreak, the Committee required assurance there was a footprint and informants in the necessary hotspots in terms of the budget available for spending. On its oversight visit to Mpumalanga, the Committee had found that not all of the budget had been used at cluster level. He knew from the previous environment that this was difficult, but it was important there was an assurance from all provinces that intelligence was available and the necessary strategies were in place in the hotspots. This network and human intelligence was important for pre-empting activities, to ensure there was not simply a reaction. He then asked about the progress with the new young crop of graduates, because for effective policing it was important to ensure the graduates formed part of the new kind of organisational culture, with an ingrained ethos, as a target in the turnaround strategy.
National Commissioner Phiyega said the footprints were growing in areas and some initiatives were being looked into, especially with localised intelligence. One of the plans was to start inculcating, in Crime Intelligence, the new ethos which was part of new recruits and learnerships in this space, especially in areas like cyber crime.
Maj-Gen Zulu added there was concern around the capacitation of clusters. Informers needed information handlers, so this was why the Crime Intelligence clusters were prioritised to build leadership among warrant officers to handle the information. The officers were now also resourced with more vehicles at the cluster level. Redistribution of some vehicles from head office to the clusters had been done to ensure there was capacity. Localised intelligence was vital for combating crime and for this, the clusters needed to be capacitated. The emphasis was more on clusters at the local level, as opposed to national and provincial. This cluster capacitation formed part of the turnaround strategy. On the young graduates, she said these new recruits had specific qualifications related to the crime intelligence environment, after the advertisements placed at the end of the financial year. This meant the graduates were still being guided in areas of recruitment, as they were inexperienced. There were also interns in specialised environments like cyber crime, where the aim was to absorb these interns fully after they had gained experience.
Lt-Gen Christabel Mbekela, SAPS: Corporate Service Management, stated that SAPS was looking at using a multi-pronged approach for recruitment, to inform the lateral infusion of those with certain degrees. These people would be trained further for specialisation in certain environments. In this regard, SAPS was working with the Sector Education and Training Authorities (SETAs) and National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) to identify potential candidates to be sent to international institutions for specialisation in certain environments like cyber crime. In the UK, there was an important institution which could aid in building that capacity for young graduates through special training. SAPS was also investing in training members through learnerships in certain environments. In terms of compliance with the Skills Development Act, SAPS was making every effort to ensure the capacitation of different environments, especially those with scare skills.
National Commissioner Phiyega added that SAPS had also been approached by the private sector, like banks and Vodacom, to say members could be sent to the training centres for the transfer of skills, so this was also being explored to further enhance skills.
Ms Kohler Barnard was concerned about the court cases surrounding the Hawks, and the fact that the unit did not have its own crime intelligence but relied on the intelligence of SAPS, which was under the wing of the Office of the National Commissioner. This effectively meant the National Commissioner seemed to have given herself a watching brief over every investigation undertaken by the Hawks – in other words, spying on what the Hawks were doing. She required information about this. She noted that interception reports were down by 45.3% over the last three years, and intelligence analysis reports down by 32.25% over the same timeframe. She asked why the numbers for both these reports were down. The ISS figures for cash-in-transit crimes were up by 18% for 2013/14, along with credit card fraud up by 30% and banking robberies up by 89%. When the National Commissioner said the figures for these crimes were down, was she suggesting that SAPS had turned these figures around in the last year? Mr Ngcobo had admitted to the Committee that he had not received vetting clearance, and this had occurred within the time of the current National Commissioner, so it had happened on her watch.
National Commissioner Phiyega answered that with the Hawks, intelligence was done through three national intelligence agencies, from which all SAPS platforms benefited. She highly respected the laws of the country in terms of the level of independence the Hawks needed, and there was never interference in the work of the Hawks, SAPS supported the unit, resources were allocated and there were no complaints around the Hawks not being able to do their work, so it was a success. There was no threat to the Hawks doing their work and she was not posing such a threat in that environment. She could without a doubt say that the numbers for interception reports had increased tremendously, and the judge had been very complimentary of these increases. There was an upward steep increase over the past two years, but more needed to be done by the detectives. Mr Ngcobo did have some vetting which had expired, and he had had to renew it to get a top-secret clearance, which he did not get.
Ms Molebatsi asked if SAPS investigated its own members for corruption. She also wanted to know if lifestyle audits were conducted on members living lavish lifestyles -- for example, a member who had bought three brand new cars in two weeks.
National Commissioner Phiyega indicated it was on record that the business of SAPS was combating crime – it did not matter where this crime was, only that it was dealt with. SAPS need to “up the ante” to enhance the internal processes of investigating its own members. The establishment of the integrity unit in itself was confirmation of the commitment to ensure there was keen investigation of criminal activities within the SAPS itself. Crime committed by the police was reportable and was tracked on a weekly basis in order to be aligned with disciplinary interventions. She embraced further comments, advice and inputs, but she had no doubt these matters would be dealt with and the Committee should not doubt SAPS’s commitment. Lifestyle audits were conducted and cases were fully investigated. In this regard SAPS was working with the Special Investigating Unit (SIU), the SA Revenue Service (SARS) and others. It bothered her to hear such reports and although she found it concerning, she ensured Members they would be dealt with. When 19 police officers were arrested in December in Limpopo, it was as a result of lifestyle audits, where it had been found some people paid off a housing bond in three months or bought two houses in a year, which did not match their salaries. If it could not be proved where the money came from, SAPS needed to investigate.
Mr Ramatlakane commented there may be some gaps in terms of communities, language and crime intelligence, which was something that SAPS management could look into going forward. Management would have to brief the Committee on how this would be addressed, even if there was knowledge of this specific weakness. SAPS’s reaction to situations indicated to him that there was a gap in crime intelligence, or in neutralising threats. Everyone should accept that the quality of crime intelligence should at least lead the police into a watertight case to make arrests and assist the work of detectives, which would then increase the conviction rates. The engagement today revealed there were many gaps in this linear pattern and there was a need to gravitate towards closing these gaps especially where communities were hostile. SAPS would need to be held to account for these reactions.
National Commissioner Phiyega said she took note of the advice given and acknowledged the need to look at quality and watertight cases, but these were all areas of continuous improvement.
Mr Groenewald said that according to the National Commissioner, with Crime Intelligence the police knew exactly where the hotspots were, the illegal immigrants there and the anti-foreign sentiments. This was not the first time SA had had xenophobic attacks, so SAPS must have known what was going on and where the illegal immigrants were. He wanted to know what the big reasons were for the current xenophobic attacks. What, according to the police, were the major causes for the recent flare up of violence?
National Commissioner Phiyega said that policing, like all other social science activities, could not be an exact science. SAPS were looking at building a body of threats to respond to by using the national security strategy, national estimates, POP, detectives and an internal threat analysis, but this could never be exact or absolute – only a very broad blanket could be cast. For example, there were porous borders and a need to draw on the skills of various departments like the Treasury, Health and Environmental Affairs to the area. This required an integrated focus for a border management agency, to be led by the Department of Home Affairs. On what drove some of the aspects related to xenophobic attacks, there were socio-economic circumstances and competition for very limited resources, like space. There were also other small issues that drove violence and by-law enforcement, such as those related how spaza shops were regulated and zoned, in terms of operating hours and regulating merchandise etc. Township economic revitalisation was vitally important, and there were various issues to look at in terms of dealing with the problem.
Mr Groenewald said that he had asked two specific questions around the major causes for the recent attacks, and not general issues that everyone knew about. Did the fact that the National Commissioner could not answer point to a lack of crime intelligence? He had also specifically asked about illegal immigrants.
National Commissioner Phiyega responded that she did not what kind of answer the Member sought, or maybe she had failed to comprehend and rise to the level of the question asked. There were shared drivers characterising these attacks and these drivers had been discussed at the National Joint Operations and Intelligence Structure (NATJOINTS). The newspapers were saying the attacks were due to certain statements articulated, but neither she personally, nor SAPS, could attest to this.
Mr Groenewald assisted the National Commissioner by stating he was asking a simple question – over the last few weeks of xenophobic attacks, what specific issues had caused or sparked these attacks? He could not accept a general answer, as that was experienced by all every day. There must be specific drivers for the current attacks -- maybe specific to the areas in which they were occurring. He also wanted to know what SAPS were doing about the illegal immigrants.
Ms Mabija said that according to her understanding, Members should assist by giving details they knew of, instead of going round in circles.
The Chairperson said that the reality was that Members needed answers to their questions.
Mr Groenewald added that he had the right to ask questions in Committee and it was not up to another Member to decide whether questions could be asked or not.
National Commissioner Phiyega said that trading, township economic revitalisation and the competition for resources was a fact, as this was happening in the KZN attacks. In Isipingo, it was alleged there was a shop that had fired its employees and employed foreigners. General issues did play a part in informing the violence and trends - she was not trying to evade responding to the Member. There were later media reports of statements uttered by the King, but as SAPS, she could not say that there was a link. With immigrants, the Department of Home Affairs was the lead actor. Home Affairs dealt with illegal immigrants in SA, where the law allowed them to be repatriated. SAPS cooperated with and supported the Department in this objective.
The Chairperson said that, in essence, the recent attacks were caused by a combination of socio-economic competition and the statements made.
Mr Mbhele noted that his question from the first round had not been answered. This question was around the unlawful occupation of vacant land on a large scale, as seen in the Western Cape (Marikana and Lwandle), KZN (Ballito) and Gauteng (Tshwane), and whether the issue was on the radar of SAPS for addressing. He also asked why changes had been made to the general requirements for qualifications, as opposed to making exceptions in certain cases or allowing for extenuating circumstances. He did not see why the whole system had to be rearranged.
National Commissioner Phiyega replied that NATJOINTS was looking at and sharing best practice. She had sat recently with the City of Tshwane looking at a process where the land that had been identified as belonging to the state, in an attempt to get a blanket interdict by the court to bar people from occupying the land illegally. This was just one example which Pretoria had tested. NATJOINTS was looking at other metros and how to protect land and prevent invasions. Special units were also being set up, because the law said that if no immediate intervention was taken, the next day one would have to go to court. It was also important to patrol the land to aid the city in avoiding the time-consuming, costly and laborious process of litigation. These actions were not absolute, but a lot was being done to look at institutionalising processes to mitigate this threat.
Regarding the revision of qualifications, the Act was not wrong in saying the correct and relevant people needed to be recruited appropriately. The qualifications were not being revised, but she was just looking at attracting the right people for the right job. The Act allowed for this.
Mr Mbhele wanted to know what specific role SAPS envisaged for itself within in the multi-sector approach. Did SAPS see itself as the first respondent? His information was that SAPS had been unhelpful in the crucial 24-hour intervention period, and there were issues with resource shortages, like vehicles. He was pleased to hear that issues had been elevated to the level of NATJOINTS. However, this was an issue where precedence was very important. With the response on qualifications, he asked if this meant the original qualifications still stood.
National Commissioner Phiyega said it was important to put more emphasis on reactive actions. NATJOINTS was looking to learn who out there had the best reactive strategies. She was appreciative of established case law, and how other environments benefited. She wanted other metros to join this space to start having more activities on proactive preventive interventions. She reiterated that some cities had established units which were capacitated to remove some shelters which may have already been set up. SAPS were a force multiplier, and assisted the cities in doing some of their work but this required support and for this, SAPS needed space to be created. SAPS also assisted where nobody was doing anything. She positively confirmed that the original qualifications still stood.
The Chairperson provided some closing comments on this programme, noting that due to the events that had happened and looking at some of the interactions last year based on commitment, the issue of proactive action was vital to achieve results. For this, integrated and proactive intelligence was needed, and the Committee would be watching this space very closely. Also critical were the leadership issue, the question of the appropriate use of resources and early warning systems, as the Committee needed assurance that there was this component in the SAPS to deal with threats. The Committee would also be monitoring the commitments that had been made.
In the afternoon session, Mr Ramatlakane said he wanted to see whether there was full compliance with legislation. He was not sure whether the budget had just been cut in line with the programme. It could be that it was not fully capacitated, or it could be demonstrating the seriousness with which a particular component of work was looked at.
He asked for information about the SAPS capacity with regard to case-ready investigative dockets -- whether it was 51, 101 or 201. What was the plan of management to address this particular question? It was important, because it determined whether one obtained a conviction rate or not.
Maj Gen Charles Johnson, Detective Services, SAPS, replied that there was a challenge with the available members and dockets on hand, but it was being addressed. Using the same formula for the conviction rate was not what was desired, but work was being done on improving it. In this regard, the SAPS had embarked on community involvement for assistance, to give properly investigated cases to the prosecutor to prosecute. Informers were utilised in this regard, for which more than R5 million was paid. What was encouraging was that through the crime stop offices, tip-offs were being received from people who did not want remuneration, in the form of SMSs and phone calls. Stolen items and drugs to the value of R3.3 million had been recovered. There had been a very positive response from the public in assisting police. The process had gone further in the detective service, with 18 public awareness campaigns being held. There had also been visibility at the Rand Show and interaction with the public. The SAPS had also received assistance from the Anti-Corruption Hotline. There was very positive engagement with the public, and public acceptance was growing.
Mr Ramatlakane asked for information regarding the language of the detectives assigned to particular cases, and mother-tongue statement taking.
National Commissioner Phiyega replied that the SAPS were working on a project looking at mother-tongue statement taking. A meeting was scheduled for Friday with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) regarding language laboratories. This would help officers to improve their language, look at different languages and how to develop mother-tongue statement taking. This was admissible in court. Dicta-phone statement taking was also being introduced at stations being piloted. .
Mr Ramatlakane said that the Committee needed an assurance that steps were being taken to address capacity weaknesses in critical areas of work.
Mr Mbhele said that he had seen on the news last week that a detective was giving money to ensure that dockets did not go to court. He asked where the commander was who had to ensure that the dockets were taken to court. Were the detective and branch commander in cahoots, and what had happened to this detective?
General Pitso Ramatsoele, Head, Specific Crime Investigations, replied that the person who had been selling dockets had been arrested, was still in detention and would appear in court on 29 April 2015. Disciplinary conduct was being attended to. That particular police station had had misconduct problems in the past, and about four members had been charged and dismissed.
Mr Mbhele said that there was an additional part to the question -- what would happen to the commander? In an instance like this, when a Departmental investigation had been commissioned, all the factors were looked at, including what the role of the commander. When the report came out, one of the recommendations should be that the commander would be charged if it was found that the commander was at fault, or had omitted to fulfil his or her duties.
Mr Ramatlakane asked why trial-ready documents had been stated in terms of percentages, and not numbers.
Mr Maake said that where numbers had been used (Slide 82), it had been stated that there were 30 trial-ready dockets. He asked why numbers and not percentages had been used in this instance. He asked further if only 30 were going to be investigated, and what would happen to the others.
A General in the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DCPI) replied that that this kind of information was not accommodated in terms of percentages, and was set by the Justice Crime Prevention and Security (JCPS) cluster. The Anti-Corruption task team was specifically being dealt with here and it was supposed to be in existence until 2019. This was why there was a threshold in terms of the restraining order.
Mr Groenewald said that if one looked at 2012 and 2013, it had been 86% and 89%. Now it was stated that for 2015/2016 until 2017/2018 it would be 80%, even though it had been higher than that in the two previous years. If one looked at the Strategic Plan for 2014-2019, there was huge discrepancy evident on page 25, where the detection rate for all serious crimes was 41.1%, where the baseline was 2012/2013. If one looked at page 25, the trial-ready case docket rate from serious crimes had been increased from 68% to 69%. If one went through these figures over a period until 2019, the increase in the detection rate for serious crimes was just under 2%. Did one say to the people of South Africa that over the next three to four years, the SAPS was going to increase its performance by less than 1%? This could not be accepted.
A General in the DCPI replied that if one started with the detection rate for serious commercial crime, the target had been 52%, while in the previous years it had been 65%, 86% and 89%. SAPS had then been questioned and told that its target was too low. 10% was added to make it 62%. In order to sustain the revised target for three years, it had now been set at 80% and 80%, because some cases were now going to detectives and were not being accommodated within the DPCI.
Mr Groenewald said that the response had been based on the specific issue of commercial crime, but he had also referred to the strategic plan. Over three years, an increase of less than 1% was very low.
Commissioner Phiyega said that progress has been made in the migration process, but certain components were at different levels. The second issue was to ask whether these migrating dockets were on their own, or whether they needed more resources. These were some of the issues,
The Chairperson said he was concerned about the response. If the budget process had been finalised, and there was agreement about the amount that was going to the Hawks, then there was going to be a problem, because if there were much more complex cases for dockets with much more budget needed to run those projects, that pie chart may be skewed. There were now two different processes that needed allocations from the budget process for next year, and there was no undertaking from police management for next year. Programme 6 would be fully funded, but if the detail was not worked out, there would be problems.
A General in the DCPI replied that attempts were being made by the DCPI to finalise all those cases which were not falling under their mandate. Thereafter it would be sticking to its mandate. There was a selection criterion that had been formulated, and DPCI’s concern was in terms of the response. If the budget process had been finalised and there was agreement about the amount that was going to the Hawks, the detectives were going to stick to it. That was why they had no problems with each other in terms of operations, because the mandate was being adhered to. If the dockets fell within the ambit of the detectives who were at the disposal of the DCPI, then they would be dealt with.
Mr Mbhele asked about new indicator targets in relation to cyber crime. He was concerned, because he had read that cyber crime was one of the top six threats in the coming decade. The initial target of 18% as a starting point therefore seemed a bit low. He asked why the starting point was 18% and how that figure had been arrived at.
Lt Gen Sithole replied that capacity to deal with cyber crime was in the process of being developed, including with detectives. There would be cyber crime processes across all investigations, but at the present moment he was unable to provide figures. These would be submitted to the Committee in writing.
Col Reddy replied that they had alluded to the numbers that were available. A new indicator had been introduced in this financial year. It was conceded that this target seemed low, given the threat that existed in the country. As part of the process of establishing Programme 6, it had been a requirement to develop sub-programmes reflecting the priorities of the programme, or which supported the main purpose of the programme, and cyber crime was one of them. As the General had indicated, cyber crime was located in the commercial crime space, and the registration of cyber crime was currently at a very advanced stage of being finalised. The Bill was being finalised. Where it spoke of a cross-cutting strategy, it meant that cyber crime would be looked at in all spheres -- not only commercial, but also organised crime, in terms of the mandate of the DPCI. What could be confirmed was the establishment of a sub-programme for cyber crime which would allow for increasing the capacity that was required to deal with this threat. The DCPI committed itself to review the target, as it could make progress in improving capacity. There was very limited capacity to service this particular environment, but the DPCI was highly committed to being able to deal with it.
The Chairperson asked why targets for the investigation of serious crime had been lowered.
Lt Gen Sithole acknowledged that the targets were low, but stated that they were not necessarily below the previous year’s performance. When targets were set, a zero-based approach had been adopted and resources allocated for investigations had been taken into consideration. Other processes had been put in place to try to reconsider the targets, but this was beyond this particular operational year. A project -- the Introduction of Uniform Investigation -- was being run with the approval of the National Commissioner. Under this project, cases that were not so serious would be taken away and allocated to Uniform Investigation. This was so that only serious cases would be prioritised and senior investigators could deal with them. Multi-disciplinary collaborative investigations were also being introduced so that by working together, the number of dockets would be limited and it would be easy to check targets.
Ms Molebatsi said that if the DCPI was saying it had watertight cases, why were some still being thrown out of court after being declared trial-ready and watertight?
Maj Gen Johnson replied that the state had to prove the case beyond reasonable doubt, whereas the defence could just come and say there was a possibility of innocence. There were many things that came into play during a trial.
Mr Ramatlakane asked if a full investigation meant that nothing was outstanding and that the docket was ready for trial.
Maj Gen Johnson replied that ‘fully investigated’ was not determined by the police. This was determined by the prosecutor who was going to prosecute the docket in court. It happened very often that the trial did not proceed on that day, but the docket was still trial-ready.
Maj Gen Ramatsoele added that threats to witnesses were common. Some of them got killed. A case being watertight referred to the state a witness was in when she/he was in court. This included whether witness protection had been provided. Experienced detective officers were employed in this regard. There were case dockets where there had been immediate arrests.
Ms Molebatsi asked if the quality had improved.
A General from the DPCI replied that the DPCI did have the capacity, but it was very dependent on its commercial crime unit. The DPCI had established it, and now it was starting to spread. In Cape Town there were four members, Kwazulu-Natal had two members, and at Head Office there were 27 members. So there were only 33 members for cyber crime. Capacity was lacking in the provinces.
The Chairperson said that the Committee would support an improvement in capacity, because the environment was changing so rapidly.
Ms Molebatsi: asked what the 27 people were doing at the Head Office.
Commissioner Phiyega asked if she could intervene. She said the nature of cyber crime required a very strong nexus and that was why SAPS had started looking at detectives and at levels one to five. Many people in the private sector used this cyber crime unit, as small as it may be in crime intelligence. A full report would be compiled on the cyber crime status within SAPS.
The Chairperson said that looking at development priorities for the coming financial year, he saw that only 170 members would get cyber crime training out of 93 000. Only five courses were available, so he thought there should be a rethink. If it involved only 170 members, then improvement was needed.
Commissioner Phiyega said that the comments made by Mr Ramatlakane had been noted, but the issue of Programme 6 had been confirmed by the National Treasury and it should therefore be institutionalised. Next year, SAPS would report more comprehensively on Programme 6.
Lt Gen Schutte said that since the beginning, when they came over, they were such a high priority that the Treasury had not introduced any budget cuts in the past two years. The DPCI was obviously going forward with a more refined staff establishment on all the actions they were busy with.
Col Reddy said he wanted to confirm and just touch on the issue of the breakdown of the R1.3 billion. Firstly 76% of this amount comprised compensation of employees -- salaries, bonuses, etc. This left 24%, which made up the operational costs of the DPCI. Budgetary input had been provided to the National Commissioner on annual bases for the entire DPCI throughout the country. Strategic priorities for the DPCI had been identified, based on threats existing within the country. A project-based investigation approach had been adopted which had been intelligence-led, and was allocated some of the balance of the R200 million. Approximately R30 million had been allocated to projects and project investigations, R20 million towards training and development, and a further R10 million towards cyber crime laboratories to be established in support of the threat of cyber crime in the country.
Obviously in the investigation of cases, Informers were still a very key aid, so R5 million had been allocated towards that. The balance was towards normal operating expenditure, like to maintain the fleet and other consumables required in the DPCI.
Finally, the DPCI was currently at an advanced stage in determining the fixed establishment of the DPCI. The legislation was clear that the National Head had to make that determination, in consultation with the DPSA. The Minister of Police had already written to the Minister of the Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA). The DPCI’s forthcoming budgetary input would be made by the National Head, which would incorporate the new staff requirements in terms of grades and levels needed to do deal with situation faced. It would make the submissions required by legislation to the Accounting Officer, who had to present it to the National Treasury. Finally it was confirmed that in terms of the establishment of Programme 6, the sub-programmes needed to identify what had to be established in terms of descriptions and narratives in the new programme. Once that was finalised, the costing could be done with a proper estimate.
The Chairperson raised the instance of a high profile case where it had been stated that there had been no positive response from SAPS. He asked how this would be dealt with.
Ma Gen Johnson said that as a detective. all his cases were regarded as high profile. However, there were cases that had to be prioritised. These cases were dealt with in a multi-disciplinary way. Regarding the reporting of victims to relatives of deceased, there were processes in place for the investigating offices to provide regular feedback to relatives, and instructions had been issued in this regard. They were currently involved with Technology Management Services (TMS) to develop electronic reporting to people who had access to email and cellphones.
The Chairperson said that his question had not been answered. He agreed that there were no special cases.
Commissioner Phiyega said there were certain areas where more needed to be done. Communication that was technology-based had been introduced. An instructed feedback process to the client was being worked on as a strategy. SAPS was looking at consistency in managing its feedback to clients. There was also much more that detectives could do.
Lt Gen Sithole said that it was a requirement to give feedback to complainants.
Mr Ramatlakane said that the appropriate use of resources and monitoring were management issues.
Mr Groenewald said there was no difference between high priority and normal cases. He asked, when it came to rewards, who determined how much they were, and who determined if there was a reward.
Maj Gen Johnson replied that investigating officers requested and applied for rewards when they experienced difficulty during an investigation. The detective commander would instruct the investigating officer to apply for a reward, based on the nature of the crime and the difficulty of the investigation. The application would then be forwarded to the provincial office where the provincial head would determine an amount which he or she could approve, otherwise it would be forwarded to the Divisional Commissioner, who would determine the amount. There was no fixed amount for rewards -- it depended on the circumstances of the crime and the difficulty of the investigation. A lot of rewards were offered that were not necessarily reflected in the media, as the SAPS used the local media and newspapers to promote rewards.
Lt Gen Schutte said that the SAPS had given the Committee a thick document that had information in it about the informal reward system. There was a cap of R250 000. For up to R250 000, there was a level of delegation, and above R250 000 it was the National Commissioner’s responsibility. It was not a “free for all.”
Lt Gen Sithole added that the document referred to by Lt Gen Schutte set out the criteria for rewards.
Ms Molebatsi said that with regard to work load, one found that detectives in previously disadvantaged areas had more cases than those in suburban areas. She asked if something was being done to address this.
Commissioner Phiyega said that the SAPS were looking into case load analysis, combined with age analysis. For example, if there were 150 cases, it was being assessed how many cases were three years old and how many were five years old and where they were located. The SAPS was also looking at what other countries were doing when they categorised the nature of cases. It was being assessed with detectives what the quality of their workload was. If there were disproportionate allocations, then capacity issues were at play. This process of analysis was in progress.
Lt Gen Sithole said that cases were now being linked with station profiles, so the full capacity for investigation could be assessed. This would be recommended to the National Commissioner. There were feasibility studies being done at certain police stations, so the allocation of resources could be strategically balanced. This process has started.
Maj Gen Johnson said he agreed with the National Commissioner regarding age analysis and adopted analysis. Both methods were used to see at which stations there were challenges. The Planning Intervention Team would then be sent to see what the problems were, and how that specific station or cluster could be assisted.
Commissioner Phiyega said that effective monitoring of feedback had been noted, and it would be built into the processes being dealt with.
Mr Ramatlakane said that the Western Cape had the stations with the highest number of murders and crime in general. With most of them, the perpetrators of the crimes could not be found. This was probably because when the crime was committed, there was no crime scene management or anybody close to it, and sometimes a detective would appear only ten to 15 hours later. He appealed to the Commissioner and the team that there should be some degree of urgency in dealing with this particular aspect, because it was an inexplicable problem that people were murdered and no one was arrested.
Commissioner Phiyega replied that this was related to the issue of confidence. The moment SAPS started turning around the space of feedback, she was sure that more people would be open to reporting and would come forward. People would not be reluctant to come forward because they knew that they would get feedback.
Commissioner Phiyega said that the head of DPCI in Gauteng had been suspended. Another recent suspension was that of the head of the Hawks in Limpopo. Prior to his departure, General Dramat had resigned his position. She was aware that there were pending issues, both in terms of disciplinary processes, and that the processes were at a fairly advanced stage.
Ms Kohler Barnard said that she had asked a specific question in relation to the court rulings, and would appreciate a response.
The Chairperson interjected and said that his question still had to be answered.
General Phiyega said his question had been about the Dramat matter. She was aware that General Dramat had requested to leave the service, and an agreement had been reached between his lawyers and the lawyers of the Minister. The matter that had been referred to her, as Accounting Officer, was to look at processing the agreement that had been reached. She had duly intervened in that regard, and General Dramat had confirmed his request to leave the service, and had filed his documentation.
With reference to a question from Ms Kohler Barnard about keeping court processes aside and ignoring the law, General Dramat had asked to depart from the service, so the law had not been ignored.
Ms Kohler-Barnard said the Commissioner was absolutely ignoring the court order. The suspension of Gen had been declared unlawful and set aside. That was what the judge had ruled and the Commissioner had treated the court with complete contempt.
Commissioner Phiyega said that General Dramat was no longer in that position because of what he had requested, and it was important to continue the work of the police.
Ms Molebatsi asked who determined what a trial-ready docket was.
Ma Gen Johnson said he would first explain what was meant by a trial-ready docket, and then he would answer the question as to who determined it. Fully investigated meant that there was no outstanding information which required further investigation by a detective, and that all evidence had been obtained. That was what a trial-ready docket meant. The prosecuting authority determined whether a docket was trial ready or not, together with the investigating officer.
On the issue of detectives working only from 8 am to 5 pm, Commissioner Phiyega said that the SAPS would make sure all their offerings were 24/7. Attention would be given to “8 to 5” detectives, but the SAPS had also bound itself in terms of certain agreements. This was an agreement it could not implement instantly -- it had to be negotiated, because that was how the SAPS conducted itself as a sector. It was still subject to negotiation, even though the urgency of the situation was recognised.
Chairperson said that it was important from the Committee side that Detective Services had to be successful. In its visit to Mpumalanga and the Kruger National Park, the Committee had seen the excellent work that was being done, but on the ground -- at the station level -- that was where it was important. There had to be quality in services spread to all communities. There had to be a redistribution of resources so that those stations with the highest number of cases got the necessary support, otherwise there would be a two-tier policing system in South Africa. This would be a problem. The progress reports of the Hawks and the DPCI had been noted. From the Committee side, the leadership issue was paramount and it would be monitored. Reports from the Minister of Police were expected so that there would be confidence about a secure environment. The steps taken by the Acting Officer in command of the Hawks to ensure that there was stability, had been noted, but the Committee would watch that space because organised crime should be the number one priority going forward.
The meeting was adjourned.
- SAPS 2015/16 Budget: Programme 4: Crime Intelligence; Programme 5: Protection & Security Services 2
- SAPS 2015/16 Budget: Programme 4: Crime Intelligence; Programme 5: Protection & Security Services 1
- SAPS 2015/16 Budget: Programme 4: Crime Intelligence; Programme 5: Protection & Security Services pm
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