The Portfolio Committee on Police met to receive the Quarter One Report of the Civilian Secretariat for Police (CSP) for the 2018/19 financial year and to receive a briefing from the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) Judge.
The CSP first quarter report for the current financial year covered the period 1 April 2018 to 30 June 2018. The presentation addressed the indicators and key achievements for the Secretariat’s programmes including administration (departmental management, corporate services and finance administration), insectoral coordination and strategic partnerships, legislation and policy development (policy development and research and legislation) and civilian oversight, monitoring and evaluation. In terms of financial performance for the first quarter, the presentation covered expenditure per programme and per economic classification before concluding with first quarter expenditure notes.
The Committee wanted a detailed explanation from the Secretariat on the managing of the relations and support to the office of the DPCI Judge and the DNA Board. The Committee requested a detailed explanation from the Secretariat on the managing of relations and support provided to the office of the DPCI Judge and the DNA Board. This was a key topic of discussion for the Committee during the meeting – unit in Secretariat responsible for monthly or weekly meetings; role of Secretariat on DNA Board
Members questioned the progress made with critical pieces of legislation such as amendment of the SA Police Service (SAPS) Act and Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) Act and Firearms Amendment Bill. Members were displeased with the tardy approach of the Secretariat in ensuring legislation was before the Committee especially given that the current Parliament will soon rise. Linked to this the Committee questioned the role of the Secretariat in providing advice to the Minister of Police. Members also requested more information on the research function of the Secretariat especially when it came to critical matters facing the policing sector such as cash-in-transit heists and involvement of SAPS members in this crime, shaping the debate and influencing policy - there was no running away from the fact that the core responsibility of the Secretariat was policy development. What kind of research was done to advise SAPS, capacitate the Service and deal with gaps the Committee raised in the line of duty of the Service? How was the Secretariat going to advise the Minister correctly and effectively on the direction SAPS should take if it was not dealing with the obvious matters before it?
Questions were posed on specific policies, such the safety in schools, community safety forums, single police service and community forum policing, vacancies, responsiveness of the Provincial Secretariats and under-spending – Members were concerned under spending seemed to be a regular occurrence and questioned what the Secretariat did with all the funding not spent. The Committee also questioned the casual reasons for the under spending and why this was not balanced by overspending in the provinces and municipalities.
There was a concern that the Secretariat did not address any of the matters flagged by the Committee in its last engagement with the entity – did this mean the DNA Board and Office of the DINA Judge had not been attended to by the Secretariat for five months? It was clear there was no urgency to deal with matters raised in the meeting in March. This was very much disappointing. Members were concerned the Secretary of Police was not up to the task of heading the institution and asked if he needed to be relieved of the heavy burden. The Committee was not satisfied with the performance of the CSP. It was clear the challenge was not with budget but with management of the Secretariat. The Secretariat must do its job. It must ensure it supported institutions like the DPCI Judge and DNA Board so that they in turn can perform their obligations. It was important that the Committee received assurance that the Secretariat, as a Civilian oversight body, would give the necessary support. This was in its founding Act. The Chairperson required that the Committee receive a report, in the next two weeks, on the matter. The report should detail all steps taken to ensure the office of the DPCI Judge is fully functional in terms of support stuff and necessary infrastructure. It was important for the Committee that the Office of the Judge functions optimally. It was through the Constitution that the Civilian Secretariat was created to do oversight. It had the mission and it was mentioned in the Constitution of the Republic. The Secretariat must ensure that supporting the Judge happens. That is what the Committee expects.
The DPCI Judge, Judge Kgomo, then briefed the Committee on current complaints, investigations and challenges experienced by the Office. The briefing covered the mandate of the DPCI Judge, current complaints in terms of complaints received per province, categories of complaints received from members of the public and members of the Hawks and complaints falling outside the scope, mandate and nature of the DPCI Judge. Members were then provided with an extensive account of the challenges experienced by the Judge.
The Committee agreed it was clear the Office of the DPCI Judge was not receiving the necessary support and resources to do his job effectively. . It was clear the current arrangement was not producing fruit. In light of the recent matters in the public domain it was important that the Office of the DPCI was functional. The Committee said it was imperative to engage the Minister of Police on the matter. The Committee needed answers from the Minister with regards to his plan to ensure effectiveness of the DPCI Judge. Other Members said the account provided by the DPCI Judge corroborated what the Committee heard from the DNA Board in terms of insufficient support from the Secretariat.
Opening Remarks by the Chairperson
The Chairperson stated that the Committee had three items on its agenda today – Quarter One Report of the Civilian Secretariat for Police (CSP), presentation by the DPCI Judge and adoption of Committee minutes and a report.
The House Chairperson approved the Committee’s application to attend the White Paper Conference hosted by the Civilian Secretariat. Members would be contacted by the Committee secretariat in due course.
The Committee was on track for the Crime Statistics the following Tuesday. There might be a change in venue which would be communicated in due course.
1st Quarter Report of the Civilian Secretariat for Police Services
Mr Alvin Rapea, Secretary of Police, stated the report covered the period 1 April to the 30 June 2018. The report would cover the service delivery environment, organisational environment and expenditure during the first quarter. It would also deal with the delivery in terms of each program. The first quarter was marked by a spike in cash-in-transit heists and killing of police officers. The quarter started on a tragic note with the murder of five police officers in Ngcobo, Eastern Cape. The Secretariat was happy the investigation went well and perpetrators were brought to book. The Minister and National Commissioner visited all crime hotspots and deployed dedicated personnel to take over investigations. The involvement of the Community Policing Forum (CPF) in facilitation of the community safety forums in building community safety featured largely in the quarter. There was also a large focus in building the trust of communities and empowering them in the fight against crime.
In the first quarter the Secretariat filled 138 of its 150 vacant posts. This resulted in a vacancy rate of 8%. The vacancy rate at the end of last year was 6%. Some staff were lost in the process. However, the 8% was still below the Secretariat’s set target of a vacancy rate below 10%. The Secretariat already started with placing mechanisms to ensure the vacancy rate goes down. Regarding employment equity status, out of the 138 employed people, 75 were females while 63 were males. This translates to a 54% female and 46% male ratio. There was one person who was differently abled which translates to 0.72%. During the first quarter, one of the people who are differently abled received a promotion in another department which reduced the disability employment figure from 1.44% to 0.72%
Mr Willem Basson, CSP Director: Strategic Planning, took Members through programme one: administration focusing on indicators targeted for the quarter and implementation thereof. Under sub-programme 1.1: department management, indicators included:
- joint Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) and Secretariat consultative forum meetings
- quarterly performance reports
Under sub-programme 1.2: corporate services, indicators included:
- maintenance of a vacancy rate of not more than 10%
Under sub-programme 1.3: finance administration, indicators included:
- percentage of payment made to creditors in 90 days
- percentage of internal and external recommendations implemented
- percentage expenditure in relation to budget allocated
Mr Basson then moved onto programme two: intersectoral coordination and strategic partnerships where key achievements in the first quarter included two capacity building workshops in Mpumalanga and in the Western Cape. There were two workshops conducted on the facilitation to establish Community Safety Forums (CSFs) in the Free State and Mpumalanga. These workshops included provincial and national SA Local Government Association (SALGA) members, various members of Mayoral Councils, Provincial Secretariats for Safety and other government departments located in municipalities. There were also an Izimbizo participation programmes to promote community safety. Community turnout was significant in Soshanguve in Gauteng and Piet Retief where issues of crime against women and children, campus safety, poor service delivery by police, stock theft, corruption within communities and municipalities lack of feedback of police on the cases of substance abuse, amongst others, were reported by community members. Looking at the indicators in this programme, this included:
- number of workshops facilitated with Provincial Secretariats and municipalities on the establishment of CSFs
- number of capacity-building sessions held on crime-prevention policies per year
- enhance stakeholder and community participation in safety and crime-prevention programmes through izimbizos, establishment of working groups and CPF functionality
- number of izimbizo/public participation programmes held with communities to promote community safety per year
- number of promotional events for the Office of the DPCI Judge per year
Turning to programme three: legislation and policy development, there were no targets set for the first quarter. In terms of key achievements for the quarter, there was review work done. The White Paper on Safety and Security Implementation Framework was finalised and approved by the Secretary in March 2018. Consultations on implementation work were conducted in Mpumalanga and Limpopo in partnership with SALGA. The implementation framework was further consulted with the Development Committee of the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security (JCPS) cluster and DevComm then requested further engagement to discuss details of implementation of the Framework. The Single Police Service joint task team had a meeting to discuss outcomes of the Single Police Service Policy Framework development process and to map a way forward for phase three of the project - phase three entails consolidation of the work of six work streams and integration of traffic policing by way of alignment with the National Traffic Law Enforcement Review (NTLER) process. The joint task team resolved to undertake rigorous consultative process in order to obtain buy-in of the policy process particularly at local government level with SALGA support and to commence engagements with the NTLER. Engagements were also undertaken with the team on the review of the SAPS Act to ensure amendments made are consistent with the policy framework. In terms of the project to review school safety protocol, a concept note for the review was developed to guide project implementation. The main aim of the study was to analyse and review the 2011 Safety Protocol entered into by the Department of Basic Education and the SA Police Service (SAPS). A draft CPF policy was circulated for stakeholders for consultation. Emanating from this process was a task team to finalise the policy. At the last workshop it was resolved the draft CPF policy be developed into a policy on community policing which included structures that support implementation of community policing. A draft community policing paper was circulated for comments.
Mr Basson said not targets were set for sub-programme 3.2: legislation. In terms of key achievements for the first quarter, the Critical Infrastructure Bill was finalised during the previous financial year. It was currently being deliberated in Parliament and is expected to be adopted during the second quarter of this financial year. Drafting of the Firearms Amendment Bill was finalised. The Bill had been approved by the Minister for consultation with various essential government departments for inputs to further address and strengthen potential contingency issues before approval is sought for public comment. Due to time pressures the Portfolio Committee resolved to introduce the IPID Amendment Bill focusing on the Constitutional Court judgement requirements. Substantive work was done on the Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Bill in preparation to submit to Cabinet for approval.
Moving to programme four: civilian oversight, monitoring and evaluation, achievements included three reports produced during the quarter under review. A monitoring report on implementation of the Domestic Violence Act (DVA) by SAPS was produced and will be tabled in Parliament. Reports of the implementation of IPID recommendations and service delivery complaints were also produced. Indicators included:
- number of assessment reports on complaints management approved by the Secretary for Police per year
- number of reports on SAPS implementation of IPID recommendations approved by the Secretary for Police per year
- number of compliance monitoring reports on the implementation of the DVA by SAPS approved by the Secretary for Police per year
Mr Hendrick Robertse, CSP Director: Finance, took the Committee through a quarter one expenditure breakdown per programme and per economic classification. For the first quarter, the Secretariat spent 20 % of its allocated budget - this was in line with the Annual Performance Plan target. The main reason for the spending, which is lower than normally planned, was spending on employee compensation. The annual cost of living adjustment for government officials was only approved by negotiations in the chambers by the end of June and was only paid in July (in August for the Senior Management Service members). Only 21% of the budget on compensation was spent in the first quarter as opposed to the average 2% the Secretariat normally spends. On goods and services, the Secretariat was only about R533 000 – the under spending was mainly due to the fact that most of the projects planned would be happening in the second and third quarter of the financial year.
The Chairperson requested a detailed explanation from the Secretariat on managing of relations and support to the office of the DPCI Judge and the DNA Board. Was this relationship a mere handing over of finances or processing of correspondence? Is there a unit within the Secretariat that focuses on monthly or weekly meetings? The Secretary of Police sits on the DNA board – what is the role of the Secretariat in this regard? He requested a clear indication of what was happening with regards to the matter. Turning to legislation, what is the progress with the Firearms Amendment Bill? Why was the Committee not given anything with regards to the Bill? What is the current status of the SAPS Amendment Bill?
The Chairperson said one of the main aims of the Secretariat, when it was established in 2011, was to supply the Minister of Police with strategic advice and research. He referenced the Community Forum Policing Policy. He did not think the Committee has heard of or seen this policy before. He was concerned the Secretariat was near finalisation and the legislature may not be well versed on these matters. This policy was developed in silence. More information was required on the research function of the Secretariat because SAPS was also developing a very strong research unit. If the Secretariat did not present products or develop products to influence policy or disseminate it to the public forum, or the Committee, what was the purpose of it in developing or shaping the debate? He asked for clarity on the matter.
Ms A Molebatsi (ANC) stated that when the Secretariat mentioned there was one disabled employee, it spoke to its retention ability. She asked whether the retention strategy of the Secretariat was intact and active. She then asked the Secretariat what its view was on school safety with regards to drugs that enter the schools through fences especially during breaks. She had a picture of a new drug that was confiscated from a spaza shop next to a primary school in Ga-Rankuwa. The drugs were being sold to primary kids. Did the DPCI Judge get enough support from the Secretariat’s office in line with its mandate?
Ms L Mabija (ANC) noted that the largest amount of vacancies was found in the civilian oversight, monitoring and evaluation programme - this meant that, out of 19 vacancies 13 are allocated in this programme. Why was this the case? The Committee encouraged the Department to appoint staff members that have adequate capabilities and skills to execute their duties successfully and effectively.
Ms D Kohler Barnard (DA) said there was no running away from the fact that the core responsibility of the Secretariat was policy development. The Committee had just hassled through the IPID Bill to avoid being in contempt of court. It had to throw out excellent input by civil society because it simply did not have time to rework the entire Bill. The Committee did the bare minimum – just ticking the necessary boxes so that it was not in contempt of court as per the court’s instructions. The Committee should have had time to review the Bill but it heard nothing from the Secretariat for two and half years and had to end up doing the Bill itself. She wanted to hear the input of the Secretariat on why it failed the Committee in that regard. In the next Parliament, the new Committee would have to start from scratch and go through the whole process all over again to rework the IPID Bill.
She asked what the story was with under-spending as it seemed to be a regular occurrence the Committee kept flagging. How is it even possible that the Secretariat was under spending? What does the Secretariat do with the money that is not spent? Is it shifted to other programmes? She could see that in the provinces and municipalities, the Secretariat had shot through all the funding available for the programmes already. She observed there was an imbalance in this regard.
Ms Kohler Barnard remembered exactly which matters were raised in the previous meeting and feared those matters would be raised again in the current meeting. She did not see that anything had changed since the Committee last met with the Secretariat. Why had the matters raised in previous meetings not been resolved? Why was it that the Judge seemed to still be without support at all and yet there was under spending on the funding?
Mr P Mhlongo (EFF) wanted to know what role and influence the Secretariat had in the current restructuring that was received or presented before the Committee by SAPS almost a week ago. What kind of research was done to advise SAPS, capacitate the Service and deal with gaps the Committee raised in the line of duty of the Service? The Member understood the Secretariat to be a key advising component to the Minister. There were key areas the Research Head of Parliament had made which he felt were relevant for the Committee - the first areas speaks to casual factors of under spending. One key aspect was that under spending seemed to be taking place particularly and largely within the oversight and monitoring programme, which he thought was the core mandate of the Secretariat. What influences the under spending and where was the Secretariat in terms of achieving the aforementioned mandate?
The Secretariat could not even claim victory with regards to the IPID Amendment Bill because it was just an effort by the Executive Director of IPID on his own with no initiative from the Secretariat.
Mr Mhlongo raised these questions because he thought that in his interactions with the senior Members of the Committee, particularly with the ruling party, there was great concurrency that the SAPS Act was letting the Committee down in terms of Parliament exercising its full control and giving directions to SAPS. Where was the Secretariat in terms of these matters raised? If the problem was under spending in the monitoring and oversight programme, what is the Secretariat actually doing about this?
What influenced the kind of overspending in the provinces and municipalities? The Committee was told it has no role in the provincial level of government in terms of funding etc. The Committee needed an explanation of what was happening at the provincial level so Members can understand why the Secretariat was not living up to its expectations. The Committee was told from time to time that the Secretariat was outsourcing legal matters. However, the Secretariat was directed by Treasury to fill the legal posts. Why did the Secretariat not fill these vacant funded posts? How was it going to advise the Minister correctly and effectively on the direction SAPS should take if it was not dealing with the obvious matters before it? The Chairperson was correct in raising the matters of the DNA board and the DPCI Judge because the matters would need correct legal judgement, direction and perspective from the side of the Secretariat so that SAPS could be held accountable.
Mr Mhlongo was disappointed and embarrassed that the Committee had spent time being briefed by SAPS with regards to restructuring only to find that on the website of SAPS the same posts discussed in the meeting were already closed. Only two of those posts would be closing on the 22nd. He wondered where the supremacy of Parliament was in that matter. The Committee was being fooled by Generals under the watch of the Secretariat that is meant to maintain and uphold the supremacy of Parliament so that security forces would be subjected to the discipline of constitutional democracy.
Mr Z Mbhele (DA) was interested in the work reported concerning implementation and rollout of the CSF policy and the two facilitation workshops in the Free State. He recalled that from past briefing the province that made the most progress was Limpopo in the simple number of CSFs established. He asked for more qualitative feedback. He was interested in the extent and nature of responsiveness from Provincial Secretariats to buy into implementation and rollout of the CSF policy and building safety partnerships across government spheres.
Given the picture forecasted around declining baseline budgets, safety partnerships that would be formed were going to be key to partly compensate for the reduction in capacity within the Police Service and also to maximise the potential that exists when there are different security stakeholders who are aligned, harmonised, leveraging and pulling their resources for building safe communities. He wanted to find out if there was any traction and momentum with the drive for proliferating community safety forums. If SAPS was shrinking but there was no accompanying building and deepening of safety partnerships, the whole of government and society would be in a pickle concerning the safety picture of the country.
In programme three, in particular updates on the single police service process, the last briefing the Committee received was the single police discussion documents that flowed from the White Paper. Was there anything the Secretariat wanted to share with the Committee beyond the discussion paper? He was aware the Secretariat had various consultations with SALGA, the Provincial Secretariats and other stakeholders. It was important the Committee be updated on the process given that it would result in a SAPS Amendment Bill. The Committee needed to be as prepared as possible. It would also be important for a comprehensive handover to the Committee in the next Parliament. Was there anything further the Secretariat could update the Committee on in that regard? What was the feedback from the Provincial Secretariats on the proposals of a single police service?
Mr Mbhele said it was the first time he ever heard of traffic police identified as an aspect of policing – this talks to integrated policing. What did this mean and what would it look like? He was concerned with the matter of under-capacity, and therefore under spending, with legal services. Was this a structural and chronic feature of the legislative drafting environment given that it was usually on a project basis? Would this not be a reason to consider a different approach to how the legislative drafting function is done? Most under spending was reported on the DNA Board with only 12.9% of budget allocated to it being spent in the first quarter. Recalling the previous briefing with the DNA Board, this seemed to come from misalignments from the growing pains of the teething process of the DNA Board it coming to a clearer understanding and therefore being able to align with requirements of the department. Was the Secretariat being proactive in facilitating and assisting that process so that spending could start flowing in a more consistent manner?
Mr J Maake (ANC) thought the Committee had a very clear soft spot for police reservists. He requested the Committee gets a draft of the policy being referred to. He requested an explanation on what the report was referring to in terms of policy. He asked to be reminded on the facts about the single police service joint task team – what was the composition of this team? What was it dealing with? What was the framework about?
Ms M Mmola (ANC) asked when the last joint consultative forum meeting took place between the CSP and IPID. The presentation referenced that consultations on the implementation framework on the 2016 White Paper for Safety and Security were conducted with stakeholders in Mpumalanga and Limpopo in partnership with SALGA” – would the Secretariat do the same for the other provinces? The presentation said a task team was established to finalise the draft CPF policy – when was the team established? How many members were in the team? The presentation stated the main under spending was on compensation of employees which could be attributed to the annual cost of living adjustment that would only be paid in July 2018 backdated to April 2018 as well as seven vacant funded posts to be filled - did the Secretariat pay the annual cost of living adjustment?
Ms Kohler Barnard said information had just been released a few minutes ago by News24 on cash-in-transit heists based on information received from the Hawks. She did not recall that the document provided by the Hawks was ever presented to the Committee. The Secretariat referred briefly to the cash-in-transit heist but to read that R1 billion was stolen within an eight-year period was very concerning. Given the massive damage to the fiscus, what research had the Secretariat done with regards to these heists? What is the international best practice? What and how is the CSP advising the Minister, the DPCI and the National Commissioner on this matter that is now beyond the occasional and had become the norm?
Ms Molebatsi remarked that one of the recommendations in the last interaction of the Committee with the Secretariat was that the CSP should assist the DPCI Judge to ensure guidelines are followed. She asked if this was happening.
The Chairperson emphasised this was an important matter. At the last meeting in March with the Civilian Secretariat, the Committee requested certain tasks from the Secretariat. There was a list of seven items. He thought it was time the Secretariat to respond to the Committee.
Mr Rapea responded to the relationship between the Secretariat, the DPCI Judge and the DNA Board noting that in the proposed organisational structure, the Secretariat has put in place the structure that should manage all these institutions. However, there was currently no capacity to manage the two institutions.
The Chairperson asked what this meant - did this mean there were currently vacancies?
Mr Rapea answered that the draft structure had not been approved. In the current structure, the Secretariat did not have the capacity to manage the institutions. It realised this is a problem and has put the proposal in the proposed structure. When the Secretariat deals with the DPCI office it is not concerned with the operational work - it deals with the budget and human resources. The marketing around the DPCI Judge was mainly going well. With the resource request the DPCI Judge requested, the Secretariat had not concluded on the matter. When a request for resources is made, it must be included in the structure. The structure must also be funded. This was an area the Secretariat must address but was taking very long.
The Chairperson remarked that in the March meeting, the Committee requested the Secretariat to assist that process. It was now September. He asked the Secretariat to detail how it assisted the DPCI Judge in the last five months.
Ms Mabija stated that in order for her to be able to continue with the meeting on the same level of understanding of challenges the Secretariat was faced with, she needed an explanation on who was supposed to approve the proposal. Were there challenges because the proper structure was not approved? Judging from responses of the Secretariat, it appeared there is always a challenge that inhibits it from performing as expected. If this was the case, the Secretariat should let the Committee know of those challenges so that it can assist.
Mr Rapea stated the responsibility to approve structures rested with the Minister of Police and the Minister of Public Service and Administration. If there were additional posts requested, and there was funding available, the Minister could approve additional posts as long as that decision does not affect the current approved structure by the Minister of Public Service and Administration. The only post the Minister agreed to establish, which was not in the current structure, was the one for the Personal Assistant (PA) for the DPCI Judge. The Secretariat requested the transfer to happen but, because of the level and salary, the post was declined by the person it wanted to transfer. There was also a submission which the DPCI indicated regarding differences in interpretation of the law. The submission was sent to the Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA) because it is an authority in terms of matters regarding to post establishments and hiring of staff. The Secretariat was still waiting on the DPSA regarding the matter. With regards to additional posts the DPCI required, posts must be approved through the new organisational structure. This is how far the Secretariat was with assisting the DPCI Judge.
The Chairperson stated that the Committee indicated an interim arrangement should be made regarding the PA for the Judge until finalisation of the application. The Committee also requested a written response on the matter. An indication was needed on whether there was an interim report available for the Committee on the matter. Secondly, in order to make an interim arrangement, the Secretariat does not need approval of the DPSA.
Mr Rapea explained the interim arrangement the Secretariat made was regarding the transfer of the PA from Cape Town. The DPCI Judge should indicate whether the transfer actually happened as it was meant to be effected through his office. He instructed this be provide the Committee with a written response – he was not sure if this was done because he has not followed up on it.
Ms Mabija asked if there was any way the Committee could assist Secretariat with because it was underperforming. If there were any challenges, the Secretariat needed to tell the Committee. The Committee is always trying to assist but the Secretariat was not bearing any fruits. Was there any other factors hindering the Secretariat from performing as expected by the Committee? The Committee was not satisfied at all with the performance of the Secretariat.
Ms Mmola asked Mr Rapea what he meant when he said he asked that the written response should have been done but did not follow up on it. Why could he not remember? Who was supposed to sign off on it?
The Chairperson remarked that the reality was that section 17 of the amendment to the SAPS Act was brought into the legislation in order to ensure there was proper oversight over the DPCI. In terms of complaints, members of the public can go to the DPCI Judge. The fact of the matter was that oversight institutions should be capacitated. The Committee has seen what was available to stations in other countries like China and Holland. It was clear there was no urgency to deal with matters raised in the meeting in March. This was very much disappointing.
Mr Rapea elucidated that the Secretariat identified that not having the capacity to deal with the matters was a weakness. It allocated rules in the new structure to make sure the Secretariat focused attention and dedication to the matter. Currently, the Secretariat was working on an ad-hoc basis. The assistance the Secretariat needs from the Committee was for it to help in getting the additional budget it needs for the new structure - this will help the Secretariat manage responsibilities it has.
The Chairperson stated the matter was clearly not a challenge of budget but of management. If there was any urgency from the Secretariat, the rule would be to go to the Minister and the DPSA with urgency. Oversight was not an ad-hoc exercise. It was constant. It was a major problem to say the DPCI Judge and DNA Board, which are major parts of oversight, had no capacity.
Mr Mhlongo fully agreed with the Chairperson. Looking at the document by the researchers, Treasury advised the Secretariat on the funded posts. He was failing to understand what the Committee could do. The Secretariat was lagging behind with regards to appointing people. The Public Service Coordinating Bargaining Council (PSCBC) finalised wage negotiations of the posts. He did not understand how the Secretariat was failing to simply appoint to fill vacant posts in the office of the DPCI Judge. The explanation that the PA declined was not sufficient because if one advertises a post, more than one person applies and is shortlisted – if one candidate declines, one moves to the next candidate. It does not make any sense to abandon the whole process because one person declined, unless the salary package was hidden to surprise the person - people would know the salary of the job before application. He could not accept the response that the matter was a challenge of money because if it was, it would have been raised with the Committee long before the Appropriation Bill was passed.
Mr Maake remarked that when structures are established they are given a mandate, and the mandate must be financed. If the Secretariat was mandated to do something and it is not given the resources or the finance to do it, it is not for the Minister or Treasury, but for the law. It was an Act that established the Civilian Secretariat and gave it its duties. Did the Secretariat not have the right to go to court if it was not given the necessary resources and finances? It could argue it was being stopped from doing its mandate before it was fired for incompetency. What could the Committee do to help? Should it call a joint meeting between Treasury and the Secretariat or maybe the Minister of Finance?
Ms Mmola was concerned about the matter of the DPCI Judge. She explained that when one goes for an interview for a post, six or seven people are interviewed. If the chosen candidate rejects, one moves onto the following candidates. Was the problem that the Secretariat earmarked a particular candidate who rejected the offer and therefore the whole process fell through? Blaming Treasury could not go on for any longer. The Committee was not sure whether the letters were actually being sent to Treasury or what the communication was with Treasury. She was concerned that Mr Rapea forgot important details – he is the head of the Secretariat. If he felt the work was too much for him, there were people who could assist him to do the job. It appeared he was not managing to do his job. She was also not pleased with the matter of the Secretariat not having capacity. If it did not have capacity, why did it not outsource the roles which need capacity? If the DPCI Judge does not have a PA, who is working with his diary? Was he doing it himself? The Committee needed to be harsh on everyone who was not doing their job.
Ms Mabija expressed that what she understood of the meeting, the Committee needed to adjourn and implement what the Whip of the Committee had suggested. A meeting with all role players was needed. She suggested this meeting take place before 12 September because Parliament was going to recess and the Committee did not want to stretch the matter any further.
The Chairperson read section 6 of the Civilian Secretariat Act. According to the law it was quite clear that the matter did not need Treasury or any other department - it was solely up to the Secretariat. The Secretariat must do its job. It must ensure it supported institutions like the DPCI Judge and DNA Board so that they in turn can perform their obligations. If the Secretariat did not do it, the Committee would make the necessary recommendations it made three years ago in the case of SAPS.
Mr Mhlongo fully agreed with the Chairperson. The Secretariat had not reached a dry position to call Treasury. It was a matter of the Secretariat to rise up to its own obligations.
Ms Mabija spoke to Mr Rapea in Venda. She also stated that Mr Rapea should tell the Committee why he should not be relieved of the burden of being the Head of the Secretariat, which the Committee could see was weighing heavy on him. Maybe the mandate was too much for his experience.
Mr Rapea did not believe he was failing in his duties and there was no need to relieve him of them.
In terms of what was in the Annual Performance Plan, for previous years, the Secretariat’s office had achieved those plans. There were indeed areas that needed improvement but he did not think it had reached the point of him being relieved of his duties. When the Secretariat’s office presents the Annual Report, it would show he took the Department to higher levels with a clean audit. When one focuses on stabilising an institution, there are matters that fall. The office of the Secretariat does take recommendations from the Committee. He would not have to be told that the work was too much for him. If that was what he felt he would bow out with dignity. He did not believe he was incompetent in the job. He admitted there were challenges but the Secretariat was addressing those challenges and would continue to address them. When he was asked by the Committee three months into the job whether he wanted to exit, he indicated the job needed to be done and he would do it. The Secretariat moved from qualified audits from the past two years to a clean audit. This meant he was qualified.
Mr Rapea responded to the matter of the PA of the DPCI Judge noting the post was not advertised. The Judge requested the PA he had in Kimberley be transferred to his office in Pretoria. The level that the Judge wanted the PA position to be meant the post would be elevated from level seven to level nine. The Secretariat could not do that in terms of prescripts so it made the offer. For background information, even the salary level of that person was at entry level - level 7. In terms of the transfer, the Secretariat could have put the PA at the top of the scale on that level, something which could be done with approval from the Minister. However, the Judge indicated that it was no longer necessary for the PA to be transferred. This was the last communication from the Judge on the matter.
The Chairperson expressed that the Committee would attend to the Judge and his challenges later but what was important was that the Committee received assurance that the Secretariat, as a Civilian oversight body, would give the necessary support. This was in its founding Act.
Mr Rapea stated the Secretariat would do everything within the law to make sure it fulfilled its mandate. There were matters which if it were to do, would be in contravention of some laws. However, the Secretariat was making a commitment that it would do everything it can to make sure the DPCI Judge received the necessary assistance he required to perform his duties.
The Chairperson required that the Committee receive a report, in the next two weeks, on the matter. The report should detail all steps taken to ensure the office of the DPCI Judge is fully functional in terms of support stuff and necessary infrastructure. It was important for the Committee that the Office of the Judge functions optimally. The Committee also received complaints from the members of the DPCI.
Ms Mabija noted the Secretariat said it should have done what it is supposed to do but was sometimes stopped by the law. The report to be provided to the Committee should indicate where the Secretariat is stopped by the law in doing what it needs to do so that the Committee can understand and make recommendations as policy makers.
Mr Rapea indicated the Secretariat would put the details in the report. The Secretariat itself had many challenges. To capacitate the Office of the DPCI Judge would mean the Secretariat would not be functional because all resources would be used for the Judge.
The Chairperson did not agree with Mr Rapea’s statement. It was through the Constitution that the Civilian Secretariat was created to do oversight. It had the mission and it was mentioned in the Constitution of the Republic. The Secretariat must ensure that supporting the Judge happens. That is what the Committee expects.
Mr Rapea noted the Chairperson’s remarks.
Adv Dawn Bell, CSP Chief Director of Legislation, stated that the Firearms Draft Bill was finalised around September 2017. The Secretariat was ready to take the Bill to Devcomm but there were matters raised by SAPS concerning some contingency clauses in the Bill. The Secretariat decided to take it off the agenda to deal with these clauses. The Secretariat went back to Devcomm in February 2018. DevCom recommended that before the Secretariat took the Bill for approval for public comment, it should first consult internally. There was also the 7 June 2018 Constitutional Court case which would impact the Bill. Towards the end of July, the Secretariat managed to get together all the relevant interdepartmental members from the legal sections to attend a workshop on both contingent matters raised by Devcomm. After the feedback from the departments, a meeting was set up with members of SAPS and the Firearms Appeal board to go through all matters raised. The Secretariat was currently inserting the comments into the Bill. The Draft Bill would be going back to the Minister for approval soon. Another case was launched by Gun Owners SA (GOSA) on similar matters the Constitutional Court ruled on. The Secretariat was still waiting to hear the outcome of the court case. These were matters hindering the Bill from going forward.
With the SAPS Amendment Act, the Secretariat appointed Dr Jacobs solely for the SAPS Amendment Act, as of 2 April 2018. This was the first time the Secretariat outsourced any work from the legal department. So far, Mr Jacobs sent out the Amendment Act to all the relevant role players to comment on what they thought needed to be changed in the Act. He put together a working document after receiving responses and comments. The due date for this was the 31 August. At the moment these comments were being put into a draft Bill. Advice was also sought from the State Law Advisors to determine whether it should be a review of the Bill or an Amendment Bill. They accepted the latter. They also recommended that it should be a section 76 bill in terms of the constitutional requirements. The Secretariat was intending that the Bill would be published for public comment at the end of November.
The Chairperson noted that if one reads the full chapter of the National Development Plan, in light of the two White Papers, there should be a full review of the Bill. Amendment of the current Act would not bring us closer to moving SAPS forward. When will the Secretariat do the outside consultations?
Ms Molebatsi was frustrated to listen to 'this was going to happen'. The pace in which things were done was frustrating. She asked the Secretariat to increase its pace.
Ms Mabija asked whether the Secretariat currently has enough muscle in terms of a team to ascertain that legislation is done and correctly so.
Ms Kohler Barnard agreed with the Chairperson that the legislation should be reviewed. She asked if the Secretariat did research on international best practice so that it knew it was internationally competitive. Mr Jacobs was still internal; he was from within the environment. He would also look at what was within and work with that. She wanted to know if the Secretariat had fresh input and was working with new ideas that were tried and tested in other countries.
The Chairperson also questioned structural matters which had been recommended y the Committee e.g. that the DPCI should have its own budget which was approved by Parliament and the Minister of Finance. This would require an amendment of the SAPS Act. What was the progress on these matters? Looking at what was happening with state capture, muscle was needed. The role of the DPCI Judge required much more clarity. Currently, the Judge cannot conduct proactive investigations and could only do referrals. There must be also a proactive role for the Judge. Assurance was required from the Secretariat that there would be extensive consultations before the Bill went for public comment. The danger was that if the focus was on the current Act, matters would be left out, for example, appointment of the National Commissioner and Deputy.
Ms Molebatsi asked when the Firearms Amendment Bill would be called for public comments.
Adv Bell responded that the Secretariat noted concerns of by the Committee. The Committee should be aware that some parts of the Bill had already amended and would not be tampered with in the current amendment.
Mr Rapea added that the Secretariat also submitted the Bill to the DPCI Judge to make comments and General Jacobs also had an interaction with the DPCI Judge. The Secretariat would present some highlights of the comments that came up in the process soon to the Committee.
Adv Bell indicated that so far, the Secretariat had consulted with the DPCI, the DPCI Judge, SAPS, IPID, heads of department in all of the provinces, the heads of department in community safety services, unions and the DPSA.
Ms Kohler Barnard stated that there was an entire batch of experts in the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) but Adv Bell did not even mention it. There are amazing experts in the country, and outside, but again, the Secretariat was looking inside to the same people to recycle the same ideas around. This allows people to add their own methods of building their own towers to protect themselves for their own agendas.
Adv Bell clarified that she was talking about the inside consultations - external consultation would happen around November. In response to the question of why the Secretariat did not come to the Committee earlier, after the court hearing, the Secretariat and IPID worked together to look at gaps in the current Act. That draft document was consulted with people from Africa, and South Africa, and was finalised in December 2017. This was around the same time the Secretariat received communication from the Chairperson of the Committee asking whether the CSP would be able to make a submission on time. The Secretariat wrote to the Chairperson stating it will not be able to meet the deadline of 6 September.
Mr Rapea added that the impact of changes in management in the Secretariat caused disruptions and slowed it down.
Ms Molebatsi asked which the date the Secretariat began the IPID Bill - did it begin a week after the ConCourt judgement or did it begin just six weeks ago?
Ms Mabija was under the impression that when leadership changes, the method of operation of that department or section does not change.
Mr Rapea was of a different opinion and said that changes in leadership did affect the Secretariat. In a perfect world one would think people with the same briefings and same political party would have a smooth takeover. However, this was not the case especially with the executive positions. There were also challenges of trust. In terms of retention, there was very little one could do in the public service. If an employee wants to leave, the only thing one can do is make a counter offer. The office of the Secretariat emphasised the meaning of work, development and a proper career path for those employed with it. If the employee finds another professional post in other parts of the public service, they are encouraged to take it if the Secretariat cannot compete. There are few promotional posts in the department because the department is very small.
With school safety, the Secretariat was currently reviewing the protocol in the APP as per instructions of the Minister. The belief was that reviewing the protocol was not enough. A proper policy for school safety has to be designed. This started in the first quarter. There was a project developed to focus on the matter. In the process, the Secretariat discovered SAPS was also doing the same thing and so they decided to work together. The process started in April.
With vacancies, the Secretariat did not have 19 vacancies as indicated. There were 150 posts and 138 were filled. There were now 12 vacancies.
The Secretariat did not play any role in the SAPS’ restructuring and it was a major concern that it had not because each time there is a new Commissioner, changes happen. The Secretariat has taken a proposal to the Minister regarding how the restructuring agenda of SAPS should happen.
Mr Mhlongo enquired about the vacant funded posts – details on these posts were required.
Mr Robertse received information from Human Resources that there were 12 vacancies in the Department. Four of the vacancies were in administration, two in the Secretary’s office, another two in Corporate Services, three vacancies in the partnership unit, two in policy and one vacancy was in the office of the Judge. There are two vacancies in the DNA Board.
Mr Mhlongo requested that timeframes be put in place. He asked by when the Committee should expect the vacant posts be filled.
Mr Rapea responded that most of the positions had already been advertised and were in the process of being filled. By the end of the year the vacancy rate would be reduced to less than 5%.
Ms Mabija was worried that while the Secretariat was speaking, the Judge and his team were shaking their heads in disapproval.
Mr Mbhele asked for clarity on the post on the DNA Board. He thought the Board was very eager to get the support of the secretarial structure in place. He did not understand why it would have stalled until this far to get the post filled.
Ms Mmola asked if the posts were funded and when the posts were advertised. She was also worried that the Judge and his team were shaking their heads in disapproval when the Secretariat was presenting.
Mr Maake asked for clarity on the posts at the office of the Judge.
The Chairperson asked about the review of the function of the Secretariat. He heard that on the DNA Board, an assistant director was appointed. If one compared this with the levels of the office of the DPCI Judge, there was a clear disjuncture in terms of roles and responsibilities. Was this not a matter the Secretariat was supposed to pick up on as overseer?
Mr Rapea elucidated that there was a proper organisational development assessment done that resulted in the proposed structure. In the proposed new structure, there was a Duty Director that has been included.
Mr Maake needed clarity on the document as he was not sure if there were two directorates for investigation.
Mr Robertse indicated the current cost of living was paid in July and August. Expenditure, as of end of August, for the Secretariat on compensation of employees was about 3% under the ideal it should have been at this time of the year. This was mainly because of the 12 vacancies. Funds not spend on compensation was now up to R3.6 million which was for the 12 vacant posts. This was one main contributor of under spending. The other aspect of under spending was the direct relationship between spending and goods and services - if there was no personnel, there will be no spending on goods and services. The Secretariat was just below R500 000 spending on goods and services – there was thus an under spending on goods and services. The main challenge every month was that a post remains available and the funding of under spending escalates.
Mr Rapea responded to the outsourcing of legal services - Dr Jacobs was actually not outsourced. He was an employee of the Civilian Secretariat. His post was created 12 months ago. With the buy-in of Provincial Secretariats and momentum gained for CSFs, there was much support received from the Provincial Secretariats compared to previously. He thought the strategy for capacity building workshops was working. It was even empowering local municipalities to establish CSFs. He assured the Committee that the CSP would meet its target of establishing 20 CSFs in the Annual Report. With regards to the Single Police Service, the task team established was to ensure this Single Service happens. There were various task teams to deal with legalities, establishment of units within SAPS to deal with the Single Police Service function and other associated functions. The task teams are composed of people from Metro Police, Metro Chiefs, SALGA and SAPS. Dates have not been decided on consultation of other services on the Single Police Service policy. The policy on community policing started as the policy on Police Community Forums. In the process it was realised the focus could not just be on the forums but on the entire policing of police in communities. The Deputy Minister was given the task to work with the Secretariat on development of the policy. Based on this, the Secretariat developed a task called 4 by 4. The task team has four representatives from SAPS, four representatives from the policing community and four representatives from the Civilian Secretariat. That draft was submitted.
The Secretariat meets quarterly with IPID. The last meeting was in June and the next one would be before the end of September.
Mr Mbhele asked on what level the Single Police Service matter was tabled. Was it already tabled at MinMec level?
Mr Rapea indicated that it had not yet reached MinMEC level. The Secretariat would have it on the agenda to brief the Ministers and MECs.
In response to the question of what research was done in respect to the cash-in-transit matter, Mr Rapea said no research was done.
Ms Mabija requested the Secretariat explain why it had not started research on such a serious matter. A lot of money was being lost from the fiscus due to the cash-in-transit matter. Many people were also being killed. When would the Secretariat start the research?
Ms Molebatsi was worried there were also SAPS members involved in the heists. Given this information it was very worrying that the Secretariat had not done anything about the matter.
Mr Maake asked whether it would be within the Secretariat's mandate to do research because SAPS also has a research mandate.
The Chairperson stated that part of why challenges had escalated to this level was because of the non-functional research unit of the Secretariat. The Secretariat had a responsibility to give policy advice to the Minister as part of its core function. What was the role of the Secretariat in terms of the administration of the DNA Board? On 14 August, the Committee requested the DNA Board give final inputs because the Committee needs to go to the House to report on the status of the DNA Board and it needed to take an informed decision. The DNA Board was told at that meeting it had two weeks to give the Committee inputs but nothing was received. What role does the Secretariat play on the DNA Board to ensure the agenda of the Board is achieved?
Mr Rapea stated that he served on the DNA Board but had dedicated his role to Adv Bell. A meeting took place between the Secretariat and the DNA Board discussing how to handle work which would occur. The expectation was that the Chairperson of the DNA board would submit the report to the Committee. The role of the Secretariat on the DNA Board is that it recommends what it wants the DNA Board to discuss however it does not impose on what the Board needs to do. In terms of reporting, the DNA Board reports directly to the Minister. The main reason why the Secretariat did not have the official present responsible for research was for cost containment in terms of the size of the CSP delegation presenting to the Committee. Only three officials were selected to represent the Secretariat at Committee meetings.
Mr Robertse confirmed the post for the DNA Board was the Deputy Director Investigator.
Mr Rapea stated that the Secretariat would take the matter up on research into cash-in-transit heists. The Secretariat would also clarify if it was its duty to conduct such research.
The Chairperson said the Committee would need a briefing on the entire research portfolio of the Secretariat. It was also not clear how the SAPS Act could be reviewed, properly amended or if a study was done on the status of the police, such as was done in the UK, which would be effective in understanding where SAPS wants to go. This was however a debate for another day.
Briefing by the Office of the DPCI Judge on Current Complaints, Investigation and Challenges
Judge Frans Kgomo expressed that he would have been accompanied by the senior investigating officer however the officer could not attend due to the challenge of operating without a PA or assistance. The senior officer was compiling a report detailing challenges the DPCI office faced.
Mr Edward Rasiwela, Deputy Director: Investigations, Office of the DPCI Judge, the mandate of the DPCI office is to exercise oversight over investigations conducted by the Hawks (or DPCI). During the current 2018/19 Financial Year, 1 April 2018 to 31 August 2018, the
office received a total of 53 new complaints. Out of the 53, 18 were complaints which fall within the scope of the mandate of the DPCI in terms of Section 17L (4) of the SAPS Act. There were 17 complaints received from members of the public in terms of Section 17L (4) (a) of the SAPS Act and one complaint was received from a member of the Hawks in terms of Section 17L (4) (b) of the SAPS Act. 35 complaints did not arise from investigations which were taken up by the Hawks. The nature of the complaint from the one member of the Hawks was of improper influence or interference with the investigation. The nature of complaints that fell outside the DPCI mandate were complaints against police most of which were service delivery and alleged misconduct against the Magistrate. Complaints which did not fall under the scope of the office of the DPCI Judge were referred to the appropriate department with a mandate to handle such complaints.
Judge Kgomo stated the DPCI Judge is appointed by the Minister of Police, Minister of Justice and the Chief Justice. The office of the DPCI Judge is not a Chapter Nine Institution as it does not need to be. However, locating the Office within SAPS legislation seems to compromise its independence. It was the respectful view of the Judge that serious consideration be given to modelling the Office of the DPCI Judge along the lines of the Public Protector legislation. Alternatively section 17 L ought to be given a complete overhaul in line with the Public Protector Act. The involvement of the Minister of Police to "ensure that the retired Judge has sufficient personnel and resources to fulfil his or her functions" has never happened since 2010 affecting four Ministers of Police. What the Act requires is set out in section 17 of the SAPS Act.
Judge Kgomo referred to the first Annual Report of the Office by Judge Pillay which spoke to Judge Pillay’s experience as DPCI Judge. The document made for depressing reading. The Minister of Police saw Judge Pillay perhaps once. He wrote to the Minister who never replied. Judge Pillay was not given any investigator or any offices and operated from his chambers at the High Court in KZN. The Judge President allocated to him a secretary of the Office of the Chief Justice (OCJ). Judge Pillay never had a secretary from the Civilian Secretariat. Judge Pillay emphasised how he sometimes felt humiliated, would make representations and there would be no response from the Secretariat. The one person who assisted Judge Pillay was Dr Jacobs. However, he points out that this was not good enough because Dr Jacobs was a member of the Hawks and this compromised his Independence. However, Judge Pillay had no other option.
This Secretariat’s mandate regarding budget for the DPCI was created in terms of the CSPS Act, 2011 and set out in section 17L (13) of the SAPS Act in respect of “annual operation budget" - "An annual operational budget shall be created by the Secretariat in consultation with the retired Judge and provided for under the budget of the Secretariat for the specific and exclusive use the official duties of the retired judge and may not be used for any other purpose”. The annual operational budget of the Office of the DPCI Judge was one of the functions of the Secretariat. Members were also referred to Section 17L (15).
Judge Kgomo told the Committee that the Secretariat had been totally unhelpful and in other respects downright obstructionist. The office of the DPCI Judge can operate without the Secretariat when it is placed on an independent trajectory.
He referred the Committee to a presentation by Adv Bell that the Civilian Secretariat delivered on 7 June 2018 on oversight of the CPS. The presentation was a fair assessment of the duties of the Secretariat. In it there was very little that the office the Secretariat itself had to do for that DPCI Judge.
The reason Judge Kgomo included the documents was to give a balanced picture of what Judge Pillay and the Secretariat said.
When Judge Pillay's contract expired on 15 May 2011, he declined an extension out of frustration and at times plain humiliation. His successor, the late Judge Essa Moosa, was only appointed in September 2013. The DPCI Judge institution was therefore without an institutional head for 27 months.
Judge Kgomo was appointed on 6 October 2017 for a term of five years. He elucidated that the DPCI Judge operates without a PA or secretary, without a Chief Executive Officer, without a financial director and without a chief investigator, amongst others. The current office of the Judge inherited a huge backlog of complaints with only two junior investigators. One investigator is in Pretoria and another in Cape Town.
All challenges were well documented. The Minister of Police and Portfolio Committee are well aware of them. One of the first things Judge Kgomo did when he was appointed was write to the former Minister of Police, Mr Fikile Mbalula, in October because there were certain agreements. The Minister however was redeployed after a short time. When the Judge learnt the Minister had left, he asked for an appointment with him so that certain matters could be put in writing for the incoming Minister. Unfortunately, this never happened. Drastic intervention was urgently required to enable the Office of the DPCI Judge to fulfil its institutional mandate.
The Judge gave an overview of what the Office did in all provinces. In the nine provinces, cases dealt with were well known. These include fraud or money laundering incidents and independence of the Hawks- the only case that refers to the importance of the DPCI Judge. The minority judgement on the case was written by former Justice Chief Sandile Ngcobo. The majority judgement was penned by former Justice Dikgang Moseneke and Justice Edwin Cameron.
Judge Kgomo could not understand why the Office of the DPCI Judge was created only for it to be frustrated. He stated that he does very little of the core functions of the Office – most of the time the work done was administrative. The only investigation officer in the Office is overwhelmed and cannot cope. This was why Judge Kgomo thought the divorce papers should be filed with the Secretariat as it would be the best solution.
A draft working document for comment dated 26 June 2018 of proposed amendments to the SAPS Act was received on Monday afternoon on 6 October 2018. Amendments to section 17L of the SAPS Act were informed by a submission made by Mr Rasiwela, Deputy Director of Investigations. The submission was dated 10 April 2017, two months after the death of the DPCI Judge Moosa. However, it was informed by the late Judge and preceded the appointment of Judge Kgomo by six months.
Judge Kgomo had not yet commented on the proposed amendment implicating the Judge’s Office. It is a task that requires intense consultation with the SAPS Commissioner, Executive Director of IPID and head of the Inspectorate. Judge Kgomo was in the process of examining envisaged changes to determine whether they would be in line with the Constitution and relevant jurisprudence in particular of the Constitutional Court and Supreme Court of Appeal. Improvement to the powers of the DPCI Judge’s office was not enough - independence of the institution was not addressed. To that end, a legal opinion of Senior Counsel has already been sought but not yet received.
The DPCI Judge cannot act proactively.
Out of the state capture investigation, a DA and COPE member laid complaints about certain offences having been committed and nothing was done. What ought to have happened was that those members could have gone to the Office of the DPCI Judge and evidence would then be presented to the Hawks. The DPCI would have taken action if evidence justified it.
In the meantime, the approval of the proposed conservatory expanded personnel structure is indispensable. It would enable the Office to cost and budget. It will also enable the Office to acquire office space adjacent to the DPCI office.
Judge Kgomo thought the Secretariat was putting the cart before the horse. It was not a question of whether there was money. Unlike the Public Protector, the office of the DPCI Judge did not have the authority to create posts. The authority in the matter lies with the Minister who has to ensure the DPCI Judge has sufficient personnel and resources. It was on this point that the Office of the DPCI Judge would meet with the Minister on Friday. If there was no agreement the DPCI may have to go to court on the matter.
He emphasised the DPCI office could no longer carry on as it was. The DPCI is not independent and has to depend on the Minister who does not move. The Secretariat distorts what the Office of the DPCI Judge presents to take them to the Minister. The Office of the DPCI went to the senior HR officer to ask why she wrote to the Minister about the Judge's PA in a wrongful manner.
Ms Mabija understood the presentation to be comprehensive, complicated and congested. The Committee needed to discuss the presentation with the Ministry. She already understood what was going on. She suggested that it was of no use for the Committee to continue with the presentation.
The Chairperson concurred with Ms Mabija.
Judge Kgomo returned to the matter of the PA noting the Secretariat wrote to the Minister and it was totally incorrect. He informed Mr Rapea that the secretary was already in the system and was level seven. The Judge was informed by Mr Rapea that the Secretary first had to be at level five. Mr Rapea also told him that the secretary must resign because the Judge’s appointment was for five years.
Mr Kgomo expressed that he consulted some Directors-General and HR people who asked about institutional memory. The PA could be carried on out of adjustments etc. The Judge stated the Secretariat wrote to the Minister without letting the DPCI know what it had written. The Judge then also wrote to the Minister to review the decision of 2 May. He explained that he told the Minister that Mr Rapea had written an untrue document with aspects of the law quoted out of context. As things stood, the PA declined because there was detriment to her. She had to move from level seven to five.
In response to the question regarding whether the DPCI had support, Judge Kgomo stated that there was no support at all. He came from the OCJ and was not given a car. He was not given a laptop or a 3G card to access emails at home. He emphasised that he got absolutely no support from the Secretariat and did not need it any longer.
In the organogram by the Secretariat, the DPCI Judge was placed below the Minister, Deputy Minister, Director-General, Chief Directorate: Strategic Executive Support, Directorate: Internal Audit and Risk Management and the DNA Board Directorate. The DPCI was subservient to the Secretariat in the structure.
The Judge stated this should not be the case. He does not account to the Secretariat. This is why he would be going to court if the matter was not addressed. He had been patient for more than ten months and would not be going any further than the point he was at currently.
The Chairperson expressed that it was clear there was not enough progress on matters raised in the March meeting. From the Committee’s side it was necessary that the DPCI Judge should have the necessary support and resources to do his job effectively. It was clear the current arrangement was not producing fruit. In light of the recent matters in the public domain it was important that the Office of the DPCI was functional. The Committee would engage with the Minister of Police in the following week. The matter was of importance. The Committee needed answers from the Minister with regards to his plan to ensure effectiveness of the DPCI Judge.
Mr Mbhele stated that the Judge's testimony clearly echoed what the Committee heard from the DNA Board. His assessment was that it was clear that when it came to independent statutory bodies created through amendments, the two sides do not speak the same language. This was a structural problem and there needed to be a mechanism to set things alike.
Ms Kohler Barnard remarked that any entity set up to have oversight over SAPS for wrong doings, are deliberately under staffed, undermined and ‘under everything’. If the Minister did not intervene matters would end up in court.
The Chairperson stated that time had run out for the meeting. Next week the Committee would deal with the Crime Statistics, Committee minutes as well as the matter of the DPCI Judge with the Minister.
The meeting was adjourned.
- DCIP: Stakeholder engagement (Judge Pillay)
- DCIP: Stakeholder engagement (Judge Kgomo)
- Draft Amnendments for comments
- DPCI Investigations & Challenges
- Oversight Role of Civilian Secretariat on SAPS
- Request to Amend s17 of SAPS Act
- Civilian Secretariat For Police Service 1st Quarter Report
Download as PDF
You can download this page as a PDF using your browser's print functionality. Click on the "Print" button below and select the "PDF" option under destinations/printers.
See detailed instructions for your browser here.