The Committee met for its first day of hearings on the 2016/17 Annual Report of the SA Police Service (SAPS). Members were first briefed by the Auditor-General of SA (AGSA) where it was pointed out that for the first time in eight years that SAPS received a qualified audit outcome. In total there were 42 material findings with repeat findings as well. Some of the key highlights of the audit were that the quantity of confiscated liquor and illicit drugs were incorrectly captured in the monitoring system, there was a lack of evidence of the reported schools safety program and also a disparity in the method of calculation for achievement of the planned indicator of the percentage of medium to high-risk incidents.
The AGSA reported that there was slow response in the implementation of action plans. 83 SAPS members were promoted without any selection processes at all.
The Committee was concerned that this was the first time in eight years that SAPS, and the Independent Police Investigative Directorate, had achieved qualified audit outcome – this was indicative of serious challenges of leadership and technical ability. Members questioned the slow response in SAPS implementing action plans, engagement between SAPS accounting officer and management and the AGSA in this regard, SAPS members and families illegally doing business with the Service, SAPS members appointed without any selection process and claims against the SAPS. The Committee also discussed compliance with legislation, the quality of the SAPS audit committee, whether the AGSA required more “teeth” to enhance its ability to hold departments accountable in implementing recommendations and expenditure incurred under classified circumstances.
SAPS then began presenting its Annual Report beginning with Programme One and Two, Administration and Visible Policing (VISPOL). The presentation covered indicators, targets, actual performance, reasons for deviance and corrective actions. It was pointed out, in the general performance overview, out of 110 targets, 81 (74%) were achieved, 28 (25%) were not achieved and one target indicator was no longer measured. It was also pointed out that there was full utilisation of all allocated funds.
The Committee highlighted that presentation of the Annual Report was one of the most important engagements between the SAPS and Committee – Members were aggrieved that the Acting National Commissioner was not present for the engagement especially given that SAPS had achieved a qualified audit opinion for the first time in eight years. Members then questioned what was being done to address findings of the AGSA, especially repeat findings and interaction between the AGSA and SAPS in this regard – it was emphasised that SAPS could not expect different results when it employed the same tactics and, furthermore, corrective measures were a recurring topic in the Committee but turnaround strategies were ineffective and devoid of progress. Members discussed discrepancies between what SAPS and the AGSA reported, for example on confiscated liquor and drugs, the rural safety strategy, increase in gang violence in the Cape Flats and control systems for firearms at station level. The Committee was concerned that a large number of SAPS member, their spouses and families were still doing business with the Service but no disciplinary action was taken and that no disciplinary action was taken against SAPS members with serious criminal records. Questions were also posed on expenditure on capital assets (and the fact that no stations were built), targets not being met but 99% of the budget was exhausted, and contingency liability where Members wanted to know when the settlement process for the families affected by Marikana would be completed.
Auditor-General of SA Budgetary Review and Recommendations Report: Police Portfolio
Mr Stephen Kheleli, Senior Manager, AGSA, Senior Manager, AGSA, informed the Committee that annual regular follow ups were conducted on the system to identify and implement corrective actions to improve audit outcomes. This was with the objective of achieving a clean audit and service delivery that impacted society.
Mr Tshepo Shabangu, Senior Manager, AGSA, pointed out that material misstatements not corrected involved 18 performance indicators. In total there were 42 material findings with repeat findings as well. The quantity of confiscated liquor and illicit drugs were incorrectly captured in the monitoring system. There was also lack of evidence of the reported schools safety program and also disparity in the method of calculation for the achievement of the planned indicator of the percentage of medium to high-risk incidents.
There was an overstatement of performance of the number of stolen/ lost illegal firearms recovered within the financial year and the Rural Safety Strategy was found not to have been fully implemented at all police stations. On the police reaction time to Alpha, Bravo and Charlie complaints, it was pointed out that the IR numbers could not be traced to the SA Police Service (SAPS) members’ pocket books and the entries made could not be traced back to the EIS.
On the records maintained there were incorrect calculations of detection rate for cybercrime-related cases, misclassification between women and children under 18 years for trial-ready case dockets and an incomplete performance indicator for the number of serious commercial crime related trial ready case dockets.
The Chairperson was concerned that this was the first time in eight years that SAPS and the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) received qualified audit opinions. This raised serious issues of leadership and technical ability – these issues must be addressed in the next few months. The AGSA reported slow response in implementation of action plans – it was critical that accounting officers were closely involved in this process. He asked if the management letter was issued and how many one on one engagements there were between the accounting officers and the AGSA. The Executive Authority will have to be brought close to the process and engaged as ultimately the buck stopped with the Minister of Police. There should be quarterly meetings between the Minister and accounting officers to turn the situation around. He asked whether the AGSA was content with the quality of the audit committees in fulfilling their mandate.
Ms D Kohler Barnard (DA) was also concerned by the SAPS qualified audit opinion which appeared to indicate the Department’s failure to correct material misstatements on its financial assets among many other issues that were explained and need to be looked into. Such issues included final statements that were prepared not in accordance with the prescribed framework and failure to provide full and proper records. She asked whether there would be any criminal action taken against the officials who were flouting the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) and whether there was a list of SAPS members, their partners or family members who were illegally doing private business with the SAPS. It was clear-cut fraud for an employee to do business with an entity that employed him/her. She asked whether the AGSA received a response regarding its finding of a lack of consequence management in SAPS. SAPS also spent R2.7 billion on capital assets in a year, yet not one single police station was built out of the six stations that were supposed to have been built. She asked how the funds were spent, whether the AGSA was satisfied with the expenditure and whether there were any tangible results that the Committee could inspect.
On Regulation 45, 83 SAPS members were promoted without any selection processes at all – did SAPS provide any explanation regarding this? She was concerned that SAPS paid R50 million to civilians they shot, ran over or arrested by mistake. This was one fifth of the SAPS budget – were funds paid to victims of Marikana as well? It was reported the claims over the past four years had increased considerably and it was concerning that the police now had to pay back the people they were to protect for damages done to them.
Mr Z Mbhele (DA) sought confirmation on compliance with legislation specifically with internal control measures to detect fruitless and irregular expenditure. It appeared expenditure can be detected but the controls that prevented it from recurring were not mature enough. Also, in the AGSA’s Report, the SAPS’ audit committee was identified as of lesser quality than the others yet in the previous years’ engagements with the audit committee, they appeared to have been adequate if not impressive – what was the basis of this assessment? He was concerned that the SAPS’ organisational capacity was not among identified root causes. He asked for clarification on whether the AGSA’s identified shortcomings in SAPS, that lead to adverse findings, concerned operational capacity or quality assurance and to what extent they were a problem. The AGSA needs to be more prescriptive to the Committee in terms of strengthening its accountability enforcement role in the audit environment and to have more teeth - was there was a need to give more teeth to the AGSA so as to enhance its ability to hold departments accountable in implementing recommendations?
Mr P Mhlongo (EFF) said SAPS was an organisation of such nature that details could not be disclosed due to security reasons - how best can the Committee, as an oversight body, receive details regarding expenditure incurred under circumstances designated as classified so as to prevent use of funds without any service delivery? There were cases of plundering of resources for political convenience, particularly at crime intelligence level, accompanied by huge levels of expenditure not to the interest of the state but only for few individuals to remain holding power. Was South Africa living under the rule of law or a criminal state?
Mr Shabangu said the AGSA did have the names of officials implicated with corruption – these names were shared with SAPS management.
Mr Mbhele asked whether there was statutory provision for discretion for, where the AGSA was aware of officers facing criminal charges, they could be directly referred to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) as opposed to referral to SAPS management.
Mr Shabangu explained that in terms of section 188 of the Constitution, the AGSA’s mandate was to audit, report and make recommendations. However, what differentiated the AGSA from the Public Protector was that the latter could follow up on recommendations and take remedial action. Amendments to the Public Audit Act were underway for some referral powers in instances where transgressions, non-compliance or fraud was identified.
Ms Alice Miller, Corporate Executive, AGSA, said that issues relating to transactions of officers with SAPS were referred to the Department for follow up. The AGSA conducted interim audits so as to keep SAPS on a tracking record in terms of reporting for the next financial year. The AGSA only reported, made recommendations and reported again if the recommendations were not acted on.
Mr Mbhele suggested that, when the SAPS Amendment Act process comes before the Committee, it should consider the addition of a provision for referrals from Chapter Nine Institutions to be considered as prima facie findings of criminality which must be dealt with by SAPS as priority. This will ensure issues regarding consequence management and accountability were sorted out once and for all.
Ms M Molebatsi (ANC) asked whether the AGSA found SAPS’ record keeping to have any form of deliberate non-disclosure or concealment of material facts.
Mr Shabangu, responding to capital expenditure findings, said there were some police stations still being built while some were part of work in progress under the Department of Public Works. A substantial amount of vehicles were also purchased. SAPS also looked at the amount of fees to be paid for civilian claims affecting its contingent liability. The Marikana liability was reflected in the contingent liability disclosure. The AGSA was not challenging competence of the audit committee but rather noted the committee seemed to be of limited assurance as it did not appear to be tough on management. Root causes were both operational and qualitative – most issues arose from police station level and there were gaps in reporting to head office. With record keeping, the AGSA could not get some of the supporting evidence for performance information, however, it could not be said that there was any concealment. The PFMA required that the AGSA engaged with accounting officers before reports were issued.
The Chairperson wanted to know how many times the AGSA engaged with the accounting officers from the moment the management letter was issued at the beginning of the audit cycle. Leadership was currently a problem in the Department and the only solution to this problem was close engagement with the Minister and Portfolio Committee.
Mr Shabangu responded that the moment the AGSA identified significant issues during the course of the audit, it tried to escalate the matters to governance level i.e. audit committee, Commissioner and accounting officer. When the AGSA was unable to meet with the Commissioner, it summarised all matters and sent formal letters of correspondence.
The Chairperson pointed it out that such matters, in accordance with the PFMA, should not be delegated and should be handled by the accounting officer.
Mr Shabangu clarified that the AGSA did see the Commissioner at least twice before the audit report was signed and, in both instances, they discussed all significant matters affecting the report and root causes. The Commissioner also noted the type of action to be taken by the Divisional National Commissioners.
Ms Miller said that with capital assets, R1.1 million was for vehicles and transport assets which added to R2.01 million - the difference was work in progress on capital assets, which was minimal. On classified information, those audits were reported to the Joint Standing Committee on Intelligence (JSCI) for engagements and therefore cannot be engaged in the Portfolio Committee.
The Chairperson requested information on Section 45 promotions where about 83 officers were promoted under the provision and not in line with normal grouping procedures.
Mr Shabangu said the AGSA did not have information on that specifically.
Ms Miller said that in order to ensure there was service delivery, there was a need to create an environment of accountability from top management to lower staff. It was also important that in an audit finding or compliance finding, there was follow up on which internal control failed. In the case of SAPS, there was concern on performance information finding continuously being found wanting.
The Chairperson said the Committee will be meeting up with the audit committees and have at least two more follow up meetings with regards to the AGSA’s findings.
South African Police Service 2016/17 Annual Report: Programme One, Administration, and Programme Two, Visible Policing
The Chairperson emphasised that this was one of the most important meetings between the Committee and SAPS and the Committee was very displeased with the absence of the Acting National Commissioner, who was attending to other business. This sent a sign to the oversight fraternity especially as it was the first time in eight years that SAPS achieved a qualified audit outcome and there were many instances of repeat findings.
Ms A Molebatsi (ANC) added that the accounting officer should have prioritised this engagement, come to account to Parliament and appointed a representative to attend to other competing duties.
Maj Gen Leon Rabie, Head: Strategic Management, SAPS, took the Committee through the SAPS presentation on its 2016/17 Annual Report. Looking at general performance overview, out of 110 targets, 81 (74%) were achieved, 28 (25%) were not achieved and one target indicator was no longer measured. There was full utilisation of all allocated funds.
In Programme One, Administration, there was net overspending realised as a result of increased spending on compensation of employees. Out of 26 target indicators, 18 (69%) were achieved and 8 (31%) remained unachieved. Per financial year performance, there was a decline from the previous year’s performance of 83.8% to 69% in the current financial year. Indicators not achieved included:
- Percentage of received service terminations submitted to the Government Pensions Administration Agency (GPAA)
- Percentage of people with disabilities employed in relation to the total workforce
- Percentage of disciplinary cases finalised
- Percentage of IPID-related cases finalised
- Average acceptable rate of unscheduled absence (sick and incapacity leave)
- Percentage for planned police facility projects completed, as per the SAPS infrastructure Development Plan in respect of capital works, leases and maintenance
- Percentage of identified Information Communication Technology (ICT) infrastructure sites modernised, implemented and maintained.
Maj. Gen. Rabie outlined some suggested strategies to overcome areas of underperformance included engagement with State Information Technology Agency (SITA) for procurement of ICT infrastructure and services to address critical needs, implementation of an intervention/ contingency plan for capital works, leases and planned maintenance and capacitation of a management information center to monitor discipline case timeframes, among others.
In Programme Two, Visible Policing (VISPOL), there was general net under spending mainly as a result of personnel losses which affected the spending level on compensation of employees. Under spending on goods and services was mainly as a result of reclassification so as to allow for finance leases. This increased the spending under payment for capital assets. There was also a decreased level of spending under payments for capital assets mainly as a result of certain vehicle deliveries that did not materialise as well as lower levels of spending on reimbursements to public works-based on invoices received in the facilities environment.
Despite 11 out of 35 planned targets not achieved in the programme, the current financial year’s performance of 69% was an improvement from the 2015/16 Financial Year of 55%.
Some key indicators not achieved included:
- Number of reported serious crime
- Number of reported crimes against women
- Number of crimes for unlawful possession of and dealings in drugs
- Number of SAPS-owned firearms reported as stolen/ lost.
It was also pointed out the Rural Safety Strategy was effectively coordinated and monitored as targeted interventions were initiated and there was general improvement in SAPS reaction time to Alpha, Bravo and Charlie complaints.
The Chairperson noted the AGSA pointed out slow response by management to address audit findings, lack of stability in key positions and lack of attention on key drivers of internal control affecting leadership, financial performance management and governance. The Department was informed early on, in the management letter, of these matters, however, time had run out. What was being done to address this situation? Was there interaction between the AGSA and the accounting officer? In terms of cluster management, what was being done to ensure repeat findings on basic issues were addressed? What was the accountability chain regarding national management?
Ms Kohler Barnard asked for information regarding discrepancies between SAPS reported performance and AGSA reported figures. Out of the 1.6 billion litres of confiscated liquor, only 1.3 billion litres were reported – where was the difference of 313 litres of confiscated liquor? This also applied to the 70kg of confiscated drugs which were reported missing. She then asked for clarification on the Rural Safety Strategy where the AGSA could not determine whether the objective of the Strategy was achieved on the various respective stations, determined that it had not been implemented yet SAPS reported it had been implemented. On recovered stolen vehicles, she asked whether it was SAPS recovering stolen vehicles or if it was private entities, such as Tracker, that brought them in.
The AGSA expressed concern regarding some SAPS officials not facing disciplinary measures yet there was a list of names, family members or partners who had dealings with SAPS - this was fraud. She asked how SAPS spent R2.7 billion on capital assets without building a single police station in the past year – how was this money spent? It was explained the money was used for cars, however, this could not have exhausted the full amount. She requested more information on the contingent liability of R50 million paid to civil liability claims since it was one fifth of IPID’s budget yet it was SAPS’ members flouting the law. The situation had persisted for four years without any reported improvements. Was the settlement process almost complete with respect to the Marikana victims? Were there were any measures taken against SAPS members in aiding escapees? The Committee also needed more information on irregular expenditure and procurement without bids.
Mr Mbhele asked what the sale of capital assets, of the amount of R89.5 million, was comprised of, as noted in Departmental receipts as revenue. Only R26 000 of the amount was for biological assets as stated in the financial statements in the Annual Report. On the IPID recommendations, he asked for clarification about 32 recommendations reported not to have been implemented out of the 967 reported to have been received - 24 recommendations were reported as not implemented, due to service terminations, while 32 of the remainder were not implemented with no clear explanations. He also asked for some explanation on why SAPS had reported to have received 967 recommendations yet IPID reported to have forwarded 1 038 recommendations. If the recommendations were initiated within 30 days and 85% of those recommendations were finalised within 60 days, the output figure of 283 out of 284 cases did not add up since it did not account for the 700 cases not finalised. The indicator on the finalisation rate appeared to have been impacted by the intervention since the handful of public complaints referred to the Department were finalised expeditiously.
Mr Mhlongo expressed his displeasure with the delayed, or non-payment, of pensions for retired police officers – this led to impoverishment and social detriment of families. Such an act was a torture and a travesty of justice to the wife, family and kids of those officers who gave their lives to the nation. It was a sign of irresponsible leadership on the side of management. Reasons provided for the decline in indicators was understandable, however, instability in management was not mentioned. On promotions, the plundering of ranks for political expedience needed to be addressed least the country failed. Many countries in Africa disintegrated into chaos and anarchy because of defeat of the ends of justice starting from those at political level abusing organs of state.
Mr L Ramatlakane (ANC) said the formation and increase in gangs was a great concern in the Cape Flats –was the Acting National Commissioner satisfied with activities in the Western Cape with regard to gangs? He struggled to understand why SAPS was not doing more to assist communities in these areas. There were many committed officers but they were failed by leadership. SAPS were monitoring the situation for some time now but it had not improved – was SAPS expecting different results from just monitoring? The AGSA also disagreed with information provided by SAPS – why did there seem to be a lot of regression? Was it correct to say that targets were not being met only in the key priority areas for SAPS such as women, children and serious crime? Why were targets not being met when 99% of funds were used? Visibility of policing was a co-function and equated to deterrent in some of these issues such as the liquor deterrent measures. However, its target was not met.
The Chairperson noted the crime statistics had not yet been tabled before Cabinet – this was likely to be announced on 10 October 2017 and the Minister would engage with the Committee on 17 October 2017.
Ms Molebatsi said there was a leadership problem in SAPS since some of the officers sent representatives instead of attending the meeting in person. She asked why SAPS procured goods and services worth R500 000 without inviting competitive bids. Majority of the corruption cases at SAPS related to aiding of escapees. Which measures were being taken to address this? She sought more information on the increase in claims against SAPS by other departments. Why there was a lack of consistency in disciplining of SAPS’ members?
Dr P Groenewald (FF+) noted that there was a recent joint operation in which weapons were recovered but no arrests were made since the suspects were never apprehended. How was it possible, in such an operation, for no arrests to be made? He then enquired about the shootings in Marikana, Philippi, and allegations that the police were afraid to operate in that area.
Lt Gen Gary Kruser, SAPS Deputy National Commissioner: Management Intervention, said SAPS was disappointed with the outcomes of the AGSA findings and a response plan was drafted to address it. The plan will address slow responses, administration of SAPS, dereliction of duty and consequence management.
The Chairperson expressed his concern regarding repeat findings since they were not new issues. He asked who the responsible officer was for the turn-around strategy and whether it was the accounting officer.
Ms Molebatsi said the structure of the Cluster Commanders was ineffective and needed urgent review so as to have meaningful impact.
Mr Ramatlakane said that in 2016, the audit committee suggested recommendations but they were not implemented – why was SAPS not taking the audit committee’s findings seriously? The AGSA’s findings were an indicator of things falling apart and SAPS should brief the Committee on what the problem is. The turn-around plan was too general and did not give the reasons as to what went wrong - officers should be held responsible.
Ms Kohler Barnard expressed her concern regarding the fact that the SAPS presentation book was printed despite having known the AGSA’s contradicting findings.
The Chairperson said consequence management in SAPS was a major problem and the top five managers should provide the Committee with a plan.
Lt Gen Kruser said the SAPS presentation on the AGSA’s findings will address all issues raised.
The Chairperson said the AGSA’s qualified audit outcome was a major concern as SAPS had not yet given an alternative explanation on what went wrong.
Mr Ramatlakane said that the AGSA complained that SAPS was non-responsive to its enquiries – why was SAPS not responding to communication from the AGSA?
Maj Gen Rabie replied that at the beginning of the audit cycle, the plan implemented by SAPS at the time was not working and the same issues were identified again. There was a need to ensure there were proper controls being implemented. However, repeat findings were evidence of lack of compliance.
Ms M Mmola (ANC) expressed her displeasure regarding the recurrent reports of non-compliance – what was SAPS doing in order to ensure compliance?
Mr Mbhele said that SAPS may be too big to manage or operate from one center and this was an opportunity to investigate feasibility of a decentralised approach to the functioning of the police service. International best practices show that localised policing was the best way to go forward. Provincial officers should be empowered to have more authority in certain areas.
Mr Ramatlakane said that SAPS already identified its issue of non-compliance as a major problem a long time ago and should have made corrective action. SAPS cannot hope for different results by repeating the same tactics. Top managers who were failing were equally to be blamed.
Mr Mhlongo said that SAPS should be able to review itself on whether it had capacity to carry out its mandate. There was conflict between those who were in management and those who made political decisions. Was the appointment of Cluster Commanders based on performance or political patronage?
Dr Groenewald expressed his displeasure that corrective management was a recurring topic in the Committee. Turnaround strategies were ineffective and devoid of progress. The Committee needs to look into how it could put pressure on the President to appoint a competent and experienced National Commissioner.
Ms Mmola said the Committee should consider doing oversight visits in the national offices since it appeared they were not working.
Lt Gen Bonang Mgwenya, SAPS Head: Human Resource Management, responded that the audit outcomes inspired SAPS to review its consequence management in areas where there was unsatisfactory performance or identified misconduct in the audit findings. A no fault principle, on the part of the employee, for poor performance, will apply where there was lack of capacity, resources or personal health reasons. There will be training, mentoring and counselling among other remedies.
Dr Groenewald asked how many people were referred for disciplinary action.
Lt Gen Mgwenya replied that the disciplinary actions described were with respect to the AGSA findings and will be implemented.
Mr Ramatlakane asked why remedial actions were not taken early enough since some of the issues reoccurred from previous years.
Mr Mhlongo said that the AGSA report pointed out serious corruption cases such as officers transacting with SAPS. He expressed concerns regarding the transfer of implicated officers to other stations.
Ms Molebatsi asked when the Committee will be getting the report on the Provincial Commissioner of Limpopo.
Ms Kohler Barnard expressed her displeasure with consequence management in the SAPS. According to a criminality audit, about 1 448 members of SAPS have criminal records ranging from murder to rape yet none was ever fired from work. Officials who were identified, in the last audit, conducted business with SAPS have still not faced disciplinary action and were still conducting business through family members.
Lt Gen Stefanus Schutte, SAPS Deputy National Commissioner: Asset and Legal Management, explained that immovable, tangible assets, operating lease commitments of buildings and contingent liabilities have not reappeared in this audit. Staff members have also been appointed and secondary databases were created. IT personnel, buildings, vehicles and network assets were transferred to SITA in accordance with the SITA Act, business agreements and various annual Service Level Agreements. When payments were made, SAPS procured the service and not the assets. In recent years, however, SITA could not provide network services. The matter was discussed on various levels and it was determined that transfer of assets to SITA was not in compliance with laid down procedures.
Lt Gen P Ramikosi, SAPS Divisional Commissioner: Financial and Administration Services, said the AGSA’s chose a different interpretation of the Act since SAPS was accounting in the same way for its assets. There were extensive consultations with SITA who needed to confirm the extent of the assets from their side but they were not ready. The AGSA’s finding also had an impact on SITA. There was a change in approach to contingent liabilities since the previous approach provided unrealistic estimates. Previous issues raised by the AGA were solved satisfactorily. Recently identified issues will also be dealt with after consultation with SITA on the transfer of assets.
Mr Mbhele asked whether there was plan to prevent the quality transversal management glitch that was experienced after the change in approach.
Lt Gen Schutte responded that there was the CFO forum to mitigate this risk. For the accrual concept there was constant development taking place regarding inventory which were brought into the financial statements despite different departments having different timeframes. SAPS have had extensive interaction with the AGSA in the last six months to work on network aspects and move from a modified cash base to accrual basis.
Lt Gen Mgwenya said that with consequence management in relation to irregular expenditure, this irregular expenditure was mostly because the procuring authority was not in place before the order was issued. When the procurement process was completed and major steps have not been followed, it had to be recorded as potential irregular expenditure and thereafter an investigation takes place into the matter. During the 2016/17 Financial Year a total of 59 irregular expenditures cases were finalised – of these, 21 cases were reported as irregular. Verbal warnings were issued in 20 cases as part of the disciplinary process and there were 11 written warnings.
Mr Mbhele said that out of the R874 million allocated to capital works in the previous year, R795 million (95%) was spent in this financial year. Site clearance takes about 18 months and some projects were yet finished. Under planning and design for the 2016/17 Financial Year, there were eight projects, some of which will be completed by the end of October, with others were due to be completed in November. Two stations will be opened in Limpopo and in the Eastern Cape. The money allocated to capital works then was spent accordingly and in terms of the project.
Lt Gen Mgwenya responded that there were currently 3 140 state-owned facilities and 1 203 leased facilities - the monies were for accommodation charges and capital works under Programme One. With members involved with doing business with SAPS, this was regulated by the National Instruction form of 2012 which obliged members to apply for additional remuneration which will be considered within 30 days. Prior to August 2016, it was not a crime for SAPS members to transact with SAPS or the government. In February 2017, the Department of Public Service and Administration gave out guidelines in terms of transitional arrangements in anticipation of the Public Administration Act implemented in August 2016. Members were obliged to resign as directors from companies which had dealings with government. A circular was thereby issued to effect these changes. Before the Act came into effect, any member who dealt with government had to declare conflict in a panel for adjudication – if a spouse was involved this also had to be declared. After the Act came into force, members of SAPS were forbidden from conducting business with government. In 2015/16 the AGSA identified 31 members conducting business with the SAPS - this information was verified and forensic and lifestyle audits were conducted. 19 members were found not liable and therefore no disciplinary proceedings were preferred.
Mr Mbhele said there should be an ethical quality in police officers and officers should not be let off the hook due to technicalities around when they resigned or transacted with SAPS.
The Chairperson stressed the need for consequence management.
Lt. Gen. Schutte said that in such transactions it became more complicated and difficult when the officers’ family members were transacting with government. In such cases, family members should not be prejudiced or disadvantaged from such opportunities solely because of the fact that some of their family members were also SAPS members.
Lt Gen Mgwenya added there was a dedicated integrity management service established from November 2016 to deal with conflict of interest management, financial disclosure, maintaining registers of declared interest, remunerative work applications, integrity assessments and declaration of interest register, among others. So far there were 24 preliminary investigations related to conflict of interest and ethical breaches, implementation of advocacy and awareness programs related to ethics, integrity, anti-corruption, code of conduct and ethical leadership. SAPS were also in the process of reviewing the anti-corruption strategy and related policies. There was also an annual electronic database analysis on the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) which will assist in identifying SAPS officials dealing with government or registered in the central supplier database. All SAPS officials will be required to sign a statement clarifying their status in terms of remunerative work output in SAPS. There will also be submission of financial statement disclosures by middle management attached to financial management and supply chain management. With allegations of fraud or corruption by any SAPS member, the case will be dealt with under disciplining regulations, investigations will be conducted and, depending on the outcome, disciplinary measures will follow. Regarding discrepancies between SAPS and the AGSA, SAPS conducted monthly meetings at provincial level where officials from SAPS and IPID compared information. At no time was SAPS aware of any discrepancies nor did IPID raise any issue regarding the information given. Further, SAPS also forwarded its reports, on a quarterly basis, regarding implementation of IPID’s recommendations. The reports were forwarded to the Secretary of Police, the Director of IPID and the Minister of Police. Regarding service terminations, and the recovery plan of November 2015, there were a total of 7 199 backlog cases. In the 2015/16 Financial Year, the achievement of cutting down on the backlog was 39%. The current achievement rate in the 2016/17 Financial Year was 55.48% of the backlog cases together with other incoming service terminations which were dealt with simultaneously. The recovery plan was working. On the disciplinary cases against members, although there was a standard disciplinary measure, every case was dealt with on a case by case basis.
Lt Gen S Khan, SAPS Divisional Commissioner: Legal and Policy Services, responded to the Marikana incident reflected in contingent liabilities noting the total claims received were 653 and the amount claimed was R1 170 946 235 in respect of injuries as a result of the shootings, loss of support, assault, arrest and detention and malicious prosecution. 37 deceased minors, with various levels of dependence, were part of the plaintiffs. 32 out of the 37 deceased minor’s loss of support claims were submitted to an actuarial for the purposes of settlement. One claim was settled although some claims were rejected subject to proof of detention in order to be considered for settlement. 275 claims were submitted to the state attorney office to make offers to the plaintiffs. The settlement amounts were contained as part of contingent liabilities from as far back as 2014. The increase in contingent liabilities was a great concern for the Department due to its far -reaching implications. However, in the 2016/17 Financial Year there was a decrease in the number of civil claims reported which was at 15 837 compared to 16 498 in the 2015/16 Financial Year. This may be attributed to interventions that have been put in place to deal with the problem.
Mr Mbhele asked whether there was any reason, statutory or otherwise, why SAPS management could not figure out a system whereby the financial cost of these liabilities were passed on directly to the offending officers who were proven guilty - this may act as a deterrent measure to the officers.
Lt Gen Khan said this suggestion was being considered as part of the management intervention project. However there was yet to be a situation whereby SAPS had recovered funds from individual members.
Dr Groenewald asked what specific measures were being taken to attribute liability to the specific members who conducted the unlawful arrests.
Mr Ramatlakane asked for clarification on whether the clearing of the station’s construction sites took 18 months.
Ms Kohler Barnard asked whether there was an end date on when the Marikana cases would be finalised and the victims compensated.
Lt Gen Khan responded that there was no projected end date as of now however the approach being taken was conciliatory and, in the event parties accepted what was being offered, finality would be reached soon. With unlawful arrest, the matter was first investigated to find out if the member was found wanting in the performance of his/her duties.
Maj Gen Rabie said that some of the sites needed to be cleared so as to begin construction. This process was conducted in consultation with the Department of Human Settlements in consultation with the resident community on the location of the station. Surveys also have to conducted on the site which, on average, took 18 months.
Lt Gen Ramikosi said that, on the departmental receipts, out of the total of R89 million, R88.9 million was in respect of the sale of capital assets such as motor vehicles, machinery and other equipment.
Maj Gen Rabie said SAPS scheduled a preplanning session with the AGSA for 16 October where SAPS will get all its national and provincial representatives together for the AGSA to explain how audits work, methodology to apply and what to focus on so as to facilitate the audit process. SAPS will also visit all nine provinces to engage with provincial cluster management on the SAPS Annual Performance Plan, data requirements, internal controls, all possible audit sites, how the audit will be conducted and what they should be focusing on. This will ensure that the data collected met the requirements set by the AGSA. SAPS were currently developing a combined assurance database where there will be analysis of all audit findings and recommendations from all assurance bodies. This database was projected to be completed by the end of October 2017. This will assist SAPS in broadening its scope of feedback from not only the AGSA but all other oversight bodies.
Brigadier T Hansraj, SAPS Station Commander, Cape Town Central Police Station, said that the finding regarding the weight of drugs and liquor not captured incorrectly on the SAP13 as well as on the operation monitoring system, was not captured correctly in mililitres. There was dereliction of duty in respect of what was done, however, SAPS had implemented the National Instruction 8 of 2017 to ensure there was correct capturing in terms of the weight. In terms of monitoring, the Relief Commander also ensured this was properly recorded in terms of control documents. This was also checked by the SAP13 clerk. There was a daily monitoring tool and other checks and balances filed on the station level. A weekly document captured all drugs and alcohol confiscated along with a monthly document. Problems would need to be found before they reached the stage of capturing in terms of verification and checks. Should discrepancies be found, serious action will be taken against the officials who had failed – this was the duty of the Station Commander as the accounting officer on that level. Verbal and written warnings were not sufficient for these types of findings.
The Chairperson asked whether the case study will be rolled out to the rest of the country.
Lt Gen E Mawela, SAPS Divisional Commissioner: Operational Response Services, said that during the road show, SAPS will ensure it engaged all station commanders so as to create awareness across all stations on the AGSA’s expectations.
Ms Kohler Barnard said that the reported 313 million liters of alcohol and 70 million kgs of drugs missing cannot be explained as an error since it was established by the AGSA to be indeed missing. She asked where these substances could have gone and why there was a need for a road show in order to teach the Station Commanders how to carry out their duties.
Ms Molebatsi expressed her displeasure regarding pocket books still being a matter of deliberation yet the matter was exhausted in previous meetings.
Lt Gen Mawela said that during the road show, Station Commanders will sensitise them to the importance of registering criminal cases and also to investigate missing firearms which were also cancelled from the system. On challenges faced while measuring liquor that was opened, there were measures in place that will assist in estimation of the volumes.
The Chairperson expressed his concern regarding lax control measures which enabled SAPS members to book out firearms despite not being involved in any ongoing operation. He asked for a guarantee from SAPS that the matter will be looked into.
Lt Gen Mawela said that officers could book firearms from any police station but SAPS will ensure that the firearms were booked from a central place and cannot be issued elsewhere.
Ms Molebatsi asked for clarification if officers could book firearms from multiple police stations.
Mr Mbhele asked whether the control systems for the firearms were electronic or paper-based. If they were electronic, it would not be difficult to set up controls needed and enhance the authorisation process.
Lt Gen Mgwenya clarified that officers booked firearms from their respective stations except for officers who were part of the stability intervention group task team, due to the nature of their work.
Ms Kohler Barnard asked whether the fingerprint central database was now nationwide since there were reports of police officers misusing firearms in other provinces and getting arrested but, while out on bail, returning to their posted stations and carrying on with their duties as usual. The database needs to be integrated so as to enable sharing of information.
Dr Groenewald asked for further explanation on why the responsible person in charge of the custody of the firearms, upon issuing them out, cannot be in a position to explain the whereabouts of these firearms.
Lt Gen Kruser responded that there was an ongoing investigation on this issue so as to determine the root cause, establish a centralised checking system and firearms banks to ensure better safekeeping of collected firearms. As part of visible policing, collected firearms will be destroyed, since the longer the fire arms were kept the greater the risk of these issues.
Maj Gen M Motlhala, SAPS Divisional Commissioner: VISPOL, said that, on mitigation plans, there was an action plan developed by the Deputy National Commissioners which focused on review and implementation of the National Instruction Guide: Property And Exhibit Management and to also develop and implement an open standard operation procedure to guide open system users including recent review of the Standard Operating Procedure. There was also the standardisation of success capturing report and an open monitoring guideline in respect of liquor and open monitoring system to identify incorrect capturing and activation of immediate corrective measures.
The meeting was adjourned.
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