The Committee met to hear the 2017/18 Annual Reports of the entities in the police portfolio namely, Civilian Secretariat for Police Service (CSPS), the National Forensic Oversight and Ethics Board (DNA Board) and the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID).
The CSPS presented its Annual Report to the Committee – the presentation covered Medium Term Strategic Framework and National Development Plan priorities, 2017/18 commitments and overall departmental performance. Overall the department achieved 81% of its targets and 19% were not achieved. The Secretariat achieved a clean audit outcome. The Administration programme presented its performance, organisational environment, employment equity, reasons for employee attrition, skills development interventions and turnover rates by salary bands. The other programmes of the Secretariat presented key achievements, performance, targets not achieved and reasons for non-achievement – these programmes included Intersectoral Coordination and Strategic Partnerships, Policy Development, Legislation and Civilian Oversight, Monitoring and Evaluation. Financial information addressed audit outcomes for the past four financial years, departmental budget vs. expenditure, economic classification expenditure and expenditure trends for the 2017/18 financial year. The presentation also discussed cost driver expenditure items, key audit findings and corrective measures.
The Committee was united in congratulating the Secretariat on achieving a clean audit outcome – it performed the best out of the departments in the police portfolio, by way of audit, and was encouraged to maintain this. A key point of discussion was the model of support the CSPS provided to other bodies such as the office of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) Judge and DNA Board and the role of the Secretariat to identify alerts and advise the Minister – this was raised in light of the recent spate of community protest due to violence and policing. Members questioned what would be done about material misstatements, building accommodation, material under spend and the history of irregular and unauthorised expenditure. The Committee wanted more information on the Community Policing Forums (CPFs) and Community Security Forums, the training manual, implementation of the LOGIS system, amendment of the IPID Bill and vacancies – it was emphasised the CSPS should be driving the strengthening of CPFs. The Secretariat was requested to look at a new workable model for cooperation with the DPCI Judge and DNA Board and focus on the perceptions of the public regarding policing for the CSPS to play a leading role and give quality advise to the Minister.
The National Forensic Oversight and Ethics Board presented its Annual Report looking at the situational analysis, strategic objectives and challenges, DNA analysis performance and budget allocation challenges. The briefing also addressed taking of buccal samples and forensic investigative leads.
The Committee discussed the functioning and governance arrangements of the Board, whether the public was writing to the Board and the need for an amendment to the DNA Act given the end of the two year transitional arrangement and that samples were simply not being taken – there was great concern expressed about what would happen if the situation did not improve. Members were alarmed by the shortage in buccal sample kits. There was a concern about the low attendance and participation of some Board members and continued agitation in the relationship between the Board and Secretariat – it was important that the oversight scope and advisory functions of the Board be defined along with the Board’s independence from the CSPS.
IPID’s Annual Report presentation began by looking at the financial performance of the department for the year under review in terms of audit outcomes (the department achieved an unqualified audit for 2017/18), key disclosure areas and focused areas to improve accountability. The programmes of the department then presented their indicators, targets and output – the programmes included Administration, Investigations and Information Management, Legal Services and Compliance Monitoring and Stakeholder Management.
The Committee noted that IPID is an oversight institution and must lead by way of example when it came to audit performance and consequence management – the Executive Director was urged to crack the whip to follow up quickly on matters raised by the Auditor-General such as inadequate internal control and record keeping to reach a clean audit outcome. Members questioned IPID’s role in community protests related to crime and alleged police corruption, prioritised cases, disputes and grievances and the upgrading of ICT infrastructure. There was concern around the reduced intake and Members questioned what caused this. Discussion was had on the challenging area of IPID’s work being undermined by the police through the phenomenon of reinvestigations – Members agreed this was untenable and required addressing.
The Chairperson noted the change in plans for the Committee’s programme next week – the Committee would meet on Wednesday, 17 October, to adopt its Budgetary Review and Recommendation Report (BRRR) because of the excellent work of the Committee’s Researcher, Ms Nicolette Van Zyl-Gous.
Presentation of the 2017/18 Annual Report to the Portfolio Committee on Police
Mr Alvin Rapea, Secretary of Police, began the presentation by briefing the Committee on the background to the Civilian Secretariat for Police Service (CSPS) and Medium Term Strategic Framework (MTSF) and National Development Plan (NDP) priorities. Looking at 2017/18 commitments, in the year under review, the Department committed to deliver on the following strategic objectives:
-Enhance corporate governance for achievement of the Civilian Secretariat mandate
-Liaise, communicate and mobilise stakeholders through public participation programmes to strengthen service delivery
-Enhance stakeholder and community participation in safety and crime prevention programmes through establishment of izimbizo and working groups and Community Policing Forum (CPF) functionality
-Provide evidence-based research and evidence-led policies for policing and safety
-Produce legislation for effective policing and provide legal advice and support to the Minister of Police
-Conduct an effective oversight, monitoring and evaluation that contributes towards an accountable and transformed police service
-Improve police performance, compliance and conduct
-Evaluate effectiveness, efficiency and impact of programmes implemented by the SA Police Service (SAPS)
-Provide reliable, accurate and timely oversight monitoring and evaluation information to inform decision making process
Looking at the overview of departmental performance, previous poor performing programmes delivered on most of their targets. Communities participated in public events and izimbizo with the political champion and raised their complaints and compliments regarding police service delivery. This interaction led to the opening of satellite police stations and mobile police station points established. The Secretariat played a key role at ground level to restore confidence of communities in the police. The Critical Infrastructure Bill was finalised. The policy framework for establishment of a Single Police Service was finalised and approved and a Customer Satisfaction Survey was produced. Overall, the CSPS achieved 81% of its targets and 19% of targets were not met.
Programme One: Administration
Mr Patrick Mashibini, CSPS Chief Director: Corporate Services, noted the programme achieved 78% of targets set – 22% of targets were not met. Looking at the organisational environment:
-Number of funded posts: 150
-Number of posts filled: 139
-Percentage of personnel in terms of approved establishment: 92.67%
-Number of vacant posts: 11
-Percentage of vacancy rate: 7.33%
-63 male employees and 76 female employees
-Males: 45.32% and females: 54.68%
-Two people differently able which translates into 1.44%
The presentation then touched on skills development interventions, turnover rates by salary band, reasons for employee attrition, employment equity profile as on 31 March 2018 and a summary of employment equity as on 31 March 2018.
Programme Two: Inter-Sectoral Coordination and Strategic Partnerships
Mr Benjamin Ntuli, CSPS Chief Director: Partnership, outlined key achievements in the programme included the number of successful public interaction events between political champions and communities throughout the country, facilitation of opening of satellite police stations and mobile police service delivery points. The programme achieved 86% of its targets – 14% was not met. In terms of targets not achieved and reasons for non-achievement, this included challenges and delays in finalisation and preparation to source a service provider - a service provider to develop the CPF training manual is being sourced through a tender process.
Programme Three: Legislation and Police Development
Sub-Programme 3.1: Policy Development
Adv Dawn Bell, CSPS Chief Director: Legislation, took the Committee through the programme noting key achievements included approval of the policy on Reducing Barriers to Reporting on Sexual Offences and Domestic Violence and finalisation and approval of a policy framework for establishing a Single Police Service.
Sub-programme 3.2: Legislation
Adv Bell said key achievements in the programme included:
-Drafting of the Firearms Control Amendment Bill finalised and key policy proposals incorporated
-Deliberations on Critical Infrastructure Protection Bill were finalised by the Portfolio Committee on Police
-Draft Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Amendment Bill prepared and submitted to the Minister in June 2017 and approved for further processing. The draft Bill was presented to the Development Committee and the Justice Crime Prevention and Security (JCPS) Director Generals’ Cluster. Approval was obtained to proceed to Cabinet for further processing of the Bill
-Draft Protection of Constitutional Democracy against Terrorist and related activities Amendment Bill was prepared and submitted to the Minister in September 2017 and approved for further processing
-South African Police Service Employment Regulations were promulgated by the Minister on 27 October 2017
Targets not achieved included the South African Police Service Amendment Bill not submitted to the Minister for approval as the appointment of an official dedicated specifically to the drafting of the Bill was finalised after 31 March 2018.
In terms of overall performance, the policy development and legislation programme achieved 67% of its targets – 33% were not met.
Programme Four: Civilian Oversight, Monitoring and Evaluation
Mr Takalani Ramaru, CSPS Chief Director: Monitoring and Evaluation, took the Committee through the programme where key achievements included the Domestic Violence Act (DVA) recommendations, aimed at enhancing performance of law enforcement personnel in dealing with women abuse and femicide, were reported to Parliament and the Customer Satisfaction Survey Report was produced to provide insight into perceptions and experiences of individuals who have lodged complaints against SAPS.
Mr Ramaru said the programme achieved 85% of its targets for the year under review – 15% were not met. In terms of targets not achieved, two changes were made to the planned targets to accommodate the Minister’s priorities which were known after finalisation of the 2017/18 Annual Performance Plan (APP). New indicators, replacing 4.2.1 and 4.2.2 are: number of assessment reports on the resourcing of Forensic Science Laboratories and number of Evaluation Reports on effectiveness of the SAPS Rapid Response Services (10111).
Mr Tumelo Nkojoana, CSPS Chief Financial Officer, outlined the audit outcome of the Secretariat for the past four financial years and departmental budget vs. expenditure:
-Civil oversight, monitoring and evaluation: 17% of total spending
-Administration: 44% of total spending
-Intersectoral Coordination and Strategic Partnerships: 18% of total spending
-Legislation and Policy Development: 21% of total spending
The presentation then looked at economic classification of budget vs. expenditure. In terms of expenditure trends for the 2017/18 financial year, the Department had a total allocated budget of R124.673 million for the 2017/18 financial year. The Department spent R118.345 million, or 94.9%, of the allocated budget. The Department under spent by R6.328 million, or 5.1%, in the financial year which is 5% points improvement compared against the previous year when the under spending was 10.1%. This under spending can be attributed mainly to funded vacant posts which were not filled for the larger part of the financial year. Looking at expenditure trends per programme for 2017/18, the Administration programme spent the highest, at 98.7%, whilst the core functions spending ranges between 90.1 % and 94.4% of the 2017/18 allocated budget with Intersectoral Coordination and Strategic Partnerships being the lowest spending at 90.1%. The relatively low spending by the Intersectoral Coordination and Strategic Partnerships programme is due to the fact that it conducted/implemented most of its programmes in collaboration with SAPS therefore spending was less than originally anticipated.
Mr Nkojoana took Members through expenditure trends per economic classification for 2017/18 noting the spending on Compensation of Employees was R82.685 million, or 93.4%, of the R88.565 million final budget. Spending for Goods and Services is R31.446 million, or 98.8%, of the R34.158 million allocated budget. This spending pattern resulted in under spending on Compensation of Employees of R5.819 million, or 6.6%, and an under spending of R395 000, or 1.2%, on Goods and Services. The under spending, as previously indicated, could be attributed mainly to funded vacant posts and most programmes being implemented in collaboration with SAPS. The spending on Transfers and Subsidies is R946 000, or 89.8%, of the R1.053 million allocated budget. This spending relates mostly to leave gratuity to officials who left the employment of the CSPS but also licensing of vehicles. The under spending relates to unpaid transfer payment to SASSETA as the registration process was not finalised by financial year end. The spending on Payments for Capital Assets was R3.105 million, or 100.0%, of the allocated budget. This spending relates mostly to photocopiers financially leased as well as ICT equipment for staff, and other general office equipment, as additional staff was employed during the financial year. The payment for Capital Assets is inclusive of newly procured computers to the value of around R1.0 million and the vehicle to the value of about R800 000,00, procured for the DPCI Judge.
The presentation then addressed cost drivers of expenditure items for the 2017/18 financial year – comparative analysis of the main cost drivers of the Department, between the 2017/18 financial year under review, compared against the previous 2016/17, reveals spending on the five top highest cost drivers, accounting for more than 75% of the Goods and Services budget, increased EXCEPT for Subsistence and Travel, where there was a decrease as part of the Departments’ efforts on cost saving measures. Increased expenditure on the main high cost drivers can be attributed to increased numbers of ICT users and direct payment of other ICT services previously paid by SAPS, inflation related increases as well as an increase in the meetings by the Audit and Risk Committee and the National Forensic Oversight and Ethics Board but also some increase in the use of consultants due to capacity constraints within the core function(s). Expenditure on lower cost drivers (accounting just less than 20% of the Goods and Services budget) decreased significantly, as part of Departmental efforts on cost saving measures and the final payment on the settlement of legal fees related to the then Minister of Police with the balance thereof not paid by SAPS as previously resolved by the Committee.
Mr Nkojoana the AGSA audit outcome for the 2017/18 financial year noting the 2017/18 audit outcome of the Department improved from an unqualified opinion with findings to unqualified opinion with no findings. The Department received a qualified opinion for two consecutive financial years since it became a designated Department in the 2014/15 financial year, however in 2017/18 there was significant improvement. The AGSA however raised two concerns on emphasis of matters and other matters that management should take into consideration: the material under spending by the Department, which relates to vacant funded posts not filled by financial year end,and material misstatement in the annual performance report.
The presentation then looked at key audit findings and corrective measures.
Mr Rapea concluded the presentation by noting the team did very well for the year under review despite immense financial constraints – because of these constraints, the CSPS was limited in what it could do. This is an area in which the support of the Committee will be needed as the resources of the Secretariat were not enough for what it was expected to do. The other major constraint was the building in which the CSPS was accommodated. ICT expansion was imperative in the e-governance approach – for this, proper infrastructure was required. The Secretariat could not invest in this while it was accommodated in the current building. The CSPS required R5 million or R6 million to move into the new building. Despite these constraints, the Secretariat managed to achieve what it has in the clean audit. This was done through discipline and work done by the team. Room for improvement remained especially with IT.
The Chairperson commended the CSPS for the clean audit and for being the best performing entity in this regard in the police portfolio. He asked about support the CSPS provided to other bodies, such as the DPCI Judge and DNA Board – what was the game plan with regard to this because these challenges persisted? Was the current model of support given working? What was going to be done about material misstatements raised by the AGSA in programme two? Staff is a critical asset and they must have the proper accommodation to operate in and feel safe in – the Committee would be meeting with the Department of Public Works (DPW) soon on this matter so the CSPs could raise these challenges at this meeting. The CSPs plays a role in acting as an early alert system for the Minister – the presentation spoke about a customer satisfaction survey. A lot of civil action across the country was recently seen with regard to unhappiness about police performance, action and corruption. The question was about the role of the CSPs to pick up these concerns early on – if the Secretariat was in contact with communities and liaising with people on the ground, it was expected that the CSPS would then know what was cooking in these communities. The CSPS should then advise the Minister on what due to come to the fore – this should be the role of the Secretariat to identify unhappiness with inadequate police performance. The research unit should also be picking up on such matters. These are the key matters to improve on.
Mr Rapea responded that the model was not working because there were people who believed they knew how things should be done– the process would not work if the people involved were not prepared to be helped. The hand was extended many times to the DNA Board including the template for how the Annual Report should be presented. The Board also rejected the advice the Director appointed for it was providing. Mr Rapea had a long background in public administration having worked as a DDG for the Department of Public Service and Administration for a number of years– he knew what he was talking about when it came to public administration but this advice was rejected. This was the problem – the approach was of “we know better, you do not know what you are talking about”. The role of the DNA Board and DPCI Judge were not to act as Accounting Officers – this was the problem. The problem was not whether the support was given or not – the support was given but it was not accepted.
The Chairperson pointed out administration was continuous – part of the legislative mandate of the CSPS was to act as a manager and this entailed timeous communication, guidance, meeting and assistance. It could not be that there was an engagement and then the entire relationship was written off.
Mr Rapea was surprised to learn from the Deputy Director that tabling was not done because all the documents were ready and there was approval by the Minister – it was said that Government Communications and Information System (GCIS) said the coat of arms logo could not be used. This was very strange. It was a matter of communication but the matter would be monitored going forward. The two institutions have now seen where the responsibility of accounting lies. The institutions will be provided with the necessary support.
On the CSPS building, a bit of a facelift was given to the building by the owner – the toilets, which were not working for some time, were now fixed. The problem was that the Secretariat was still not properly accommodated as conditions were cramped. The challenge was not with DPW but with the funds SAPS said it could not provide. If one took away the money after the divorce happened, one took responsibility for escalation fees. The matter was now with Treasury. The challenge now was that by the time the matter was resolved, the suitable building identified may no longer be available.
With the early warning system, a meeting was held last week with the provincial secretariat. One of the major challenges in the provinces was that SAPS did not want to be briefed by the provincial secretariats on what was happening on the ground – a report on this would be sent to the National Commissioner. There was resistance. The work of the CSPS on the ground could only be done through the provincial secretariats. The secretariats at provincial level working together with the police were key to address matters raised by communities. The CSPS was there to support the work of the police. The early warning system should be done at provincial level.
Mr Ntuli said the misstatement referred to the number of outreach programmes conducted with the Minister which was an effective stakeholder engagement as a prelude. When the register was compiled, it was counted as an izimbizo and this resulted in double counting. There were some engagements which were not planned, as in Westbury and Bonteheuwel in the Western Cape – these cases, and new ones, would be recorded accordingly. When recording, it was important for the Chief Director to read, study and validate the report – this is how the matter would be addressed going forward.
Ms D Kohler Barnard (DA) noted that she was in Sophiatown police station last week where the station had less than half the staff required – she would have thought this was something for the Secretariat to have picked up on including what occurred in Westbury. She was pleased that the entity achieved a clean audit outcome – she congratulated the Secretariat on this. The material under spend was concerning and must be explained. When would LOGIS be online? She requested an explanation of the bank overdraft vs. under spending. The Secretariat does have somewhat of a history of irregular expenditure – when would the R30.7 million be condoned? There was a large amount of unathorised and irregular expenditure yet the Secretariat achieved a clean audit – how did this work? This expenditure could not continue to sit on the books – what was the plan for this? What was the R11 million claim by an official? Who owns Routledge Modise incorporated and why was the expenditure associated with this work deemed irregular? She was concerned about the late payment to the SA Revenue Service (SARS) and said it must be explained.
She asked why the CSPS failed to complete the train-the-trainer programme with Wits –the CPFs could not be allowed to fail as far too many times they were seen to be hijacked by other bodies. No assessment was done on the efficiency of CSFs – this was a prime example of where the utilised CSPS budget could have been put to good use – money shifted to legislation was not used. Why was the project to look at demilitarisation of Visible Policing (VISPOL) outsourced? Would it not save expenditure for this to be conducted in-house? Was there no capacity to do so?
Mr Rapea replied that the programme for training was developed but the ball was dropped. A training manual was developed by Wits and funded by SASSETA. The manual was analysed and found not to be sufficient to address challenges which existed. SASSETA then said the process could not be funded because it was an initiative of the CSPS. It was also said the Secretariat was not registered with SASSETA even though it went through the process and submitted what was required. The CSPS did not have a contract with Wits and could not simply pay it as it would be considered irregular expenditure. The CSPS was now registered with SASSETA and the manual would be finalised.
With the condonement, the case was referred to the Hawks to investigate. The appointment was done without following proper procedure. The matter was explained to Treasury but it seemed the investigation would take very long. Treasury would be engaged again and the Hawks would provide a report on its progress.
The CPF policy was developed but the matter was wider as it encompassed community policing in general. The process was pulled back and the Deputy Minister established a task team. The national board was disbanded because it was not provided for in the regulations. The current policy included the national board and how funding could happen. The policy was comprehensive and also dealt with neighborhood watches.
Ms Kohler Barnard asked what a neighborhood watch has to do with policing – were the regulations expected to take control over neighborhood watches? Would people be paid to walk the streets and was the policy looking to take control over what people were doing to keep themselves safe? She had heard rumours of this.
Mr Rapea answered that neighborhood watches were a role player in community policing. The policy would look at the role neighborhood watches play and their relationship with CPFs. This was not to say the neighborhood watches were being taken over – the policy would define their role. Another role player was private security in terms of being part of community policing.
Mr Nkojoana indicated that most of the material misunderstanding related to funded vacant posts. A recruitment and selection committee was established to ensure all filling of posts was done properly and on time. Without the implementation of LOGIS, the Department was operating manually. By the third quarter of the previous financial, piloting out on LOGIS began and by the end of the financial year it began to be implemented. This also spoke to the late payment in one month. With unauthorised expenditure, last year, the House, in the BRRR, resolved that SAPS should repay the Secretariat the R5.6 million which resulted in irregular expenditure due to the payment of legal fees for the then Minister. The CSPS has since written to SAPS but it never came back to say whether the money would be repaid or not. This impacted on the Secretariat’s cash flow – this was seen in the minor overdraft because the money was not there when payments needed to be paid. What appeared as new irregular expenditure of R1.5 million was not really new – it related to travel and legal services appointed. The R1.5 million was the outstanding amount the Secretariat needed to pay. Routledge Modise were the legal services contracted by the then Minister. There was never a stage where the DPCI Judge did not have a car – the Judge already came with a car but the CSPS continued paying this money to the Department of Justice, about R30 000 per month, including a petrol card. A new car was procured for the Judge in March so there was never a situation where he did not have a car. The other car was returned to the Department of Justice. The Judge now also had the car used by the previous Judge, based in Cape Town – this car was now used in Pretoria.
Ms Kohler Barnard asked if the matter of legal fees for the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) also went through the CSPS or if this was only for the police.
Mr Nkojoana explained the Secretariat was never supposed to pay for legal fees. The case of the R5.7 million related to the case of Mr McBride. Money paid was supposed to be refunded to the Secretariat. In this particular case, there should have been an agreement between the Accounting Authorities on the refund. This funding was never supposed to be the responsibility of the Secretariat. He noted the question of R11 million for an official was actually R11 000 – this referred to an official which the CSPS seconded to SAPS. This was specifically for claims the official paid but the Secretariat did not pay because the supporting documents provided were insufficient. On the duplicated asset register, the CSPS did everything to ensure previous audit findings were addressed. The CSPS was currently using assets it got from SAPS – the records of these assets were requested from SAPS to verification. Duplication occurred as figures already contained in the asset register were re-recorded – it was an insignificant amount and did not have an effect on the audit.
Ms Kohler Barnard was not aware that officials from the CSPS were seconded to SAPS at all.
Mr Rapea said this secondment occurred in the office of the Deputy Minister, not SAPS. The Deputy Minister required additional support in his office – the work done there complemented the work done by the Secretariat.
Adv Bell said the demilitarisation of VISPOL project was not outsourced – the provincial secretaries were working on this.
Ms A Molebatsi (ANC) congratulated the Secretariat on the clean audit and appealed that it be maintained. She asked when the LOGIS system would be fully implemented. She asked for more information on the proposed new organisational structure of the Secretariat. A breakdown was requested of the 20 Community Safety Forums (CSFs) established countrywide including their locations and stakeholders involved.
Mr Mashibini said the original proposal for the restructure was to expand the organisation with an additional 200 posts but after the feasibility study was done, it was decided to settle at 50 posts – this was supported by the Cabinet decision to scale down on the creation of new posts in the public service. The new proposed structure was being sent to the Minister for approval – as soon as this was done it would be sent to the Department of Public Service and Administration for concurrence. It is estimated that once approved, the restructure be conducted in a staggered fashion within the next Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) cycle.
Mr L Ramatlakane (ANC) also congratulated the Secretariat on a clean audit. He noted it was said in the presentation the training manuals for Community Policing Forums (CPFs) was not completed – this was concerning given the importance of these Forums. The Secretariat should be driving strengthening of the CPFs with passion. This partnership was important to deal with crime. If CPFs were not strengthened, supported or given a voice, problems seen currently would persist. The Committee needed to be reassured by the Secretariat on what would be done to fix this. CPFs are central to CSFs and key in the fight against crime. He was pleased to hear there were 20 CSFs were established but cautioned that this not be a mere tick box exercise. It is important the work of the CSFs be monitored and followed up on for example through unannounced visits. How many CSFs were there in the Western Cape? The Member lived in the Western Cape and was interested in observing the work of these Forums. He was pleased to hear about the policy on the Single Police Service because fragmentation was not useful. What was the problem with SASSETA in terms of the training manual? Looking at the Constitutional Court directives to amend legislation, the Secretariat had no choice but to meet these deadlines. Did the DPCI Judge eventually get his car? He asked how the overdraft worked – was this a cash management matter? Which rules were followed with regard to overdrafts? Or was this something negotiated with the bank and Treasury? What necessitated the increase in budget?
Mr Rapea said information could be provided on where the 20 new CSFs were established – breakdown could also be provided for the CSF footprint nationally.
Mr Ramaru said the assessment report on the CPFs could be forwarded to the Committee. The assessment of the CPFs was not done due to capacity constraints in the reporting period. This assessment was however being done in the current financial year. The assessment was also done in the 2016/17 financial year.
Mr Ntuli said the 20 CSFs were established in four provinces – this did not mean the other provinces did nothing: the provinces were servicing the CSFs they had.
Mr Ramaru added there were four CSFs in KZN, nine in Mpumalanga, three in the Northern Cape and four in the Western Cape – this was the provincial breakdown for the 20 newly established CSFs.
Ms M Mmola (ANC) congratulated the Secretariat on the unqualified audit outcome and encouraged it to keep up the good work. She questioned the audit finding of leave not captured on time, duplication of assets and what steps would be taken against those who did not take their work seriously. She sought an explanation for the varying figures shown for the vacancy rate in the presentation. What was the nature of two misconduct cases reported in the year under review related to misrepresentation? She reminded the Secretariat to ensure it met its 2% target of employees with disabilities.
Mr Mashibini responded that the Secretariat took a decision to establish an HR committee with representatives from the various units to meet every month and ensure vacant posts in the units were immediately addressed and ensure leave was captured on time. Leave was not captured on time in the period under review because of the system used – the register was submitted every Friday but a decision has since been taken that the register be submitted to HR on a daily basis so that all leave forms were captured without any delay. Currently this system was working very well. Most of the supervisors were workshopped on the importance of capturing leave on time.
Ms Mmola asked what happens by way of consequence management for those managers not capturing leave registers on time, as the AGSA found.
Mr Rapea said the fault was that the CSPS policy was not in line with public service regulations – managers were adhering to the policy but the AGSA found that the leave must be captured on a daily basis. This was now addressed. If the new policy of submitting leave forms daily was not adhered to, these managers would be disciplined.
Mr Mashibini spoke to the target of employees with disabilities noting the CSPS was doing everything in its power to meet the target of 2% - the Secretariat went as far as to say all admin posts, where the security of employees with disabilities can be guaranteed, must be reserved for people with disabilities. Progress would be reported in this regard.
Mr Z Mbhele (DA) acknowledged the improved audit outcome. On HR environment challenges mentioned particularly with vacancies being the main cause of under spending on compensation of employees, what was the strategy to address this challenge of filling vacancies including attrition and creative plugging of capacity gaps? An update was needed on the progress made on installing the complete admin support capacity required by the DNA Board. The Committee is keen to see the DNA Board adequately and optimally supported. The key findings of the customer satisfaction report needed to be outlined along with any analysis of the complaints or grievances raised by members of the public during these izimbizos in terms of operational deficiencies in the police – the idea was for this feedback to loop into recommendations made to SAPS to influence budget, activity programme design and remedial interventions. If the process worked as it should, over time the number of complaints should decrease as the feedback helped to inform measures to address the challenges.
Mr Ramaru spoke to the Customer Satisfaction Survey noting it covered the members of the public who had service delivery complaints. Another general survey was planned to not only look at the cases where there were complaints, to provide a broader picture. Looking at the Customer Satisfaction Survey completed in the reporting period under review, 76% of the public surveyed indicated they were not satisfied with how SAPS handled their cases. The Survey also looked at whether the cases were handled fairly, without bias, and 80% of respondents felt their cases were not handled fairly. About 60% of respondents felt the investigator did not have knowledge or did not consult the complainants further for more information. About 78% of respondents felt there was no transparency in how their cases were handled. Recommendations from the survey included that investigators arrange follow-up interviews with complainants to collect relevant information and the possible need for review of Standing Order 101 – the Standing Order said all complaints should be finalised in a month. There were certain cases where finalising it in one month might be difficult. Another recommendation was to educate the public on the process of submitting complaints and how the complaints are then handled.
Ms J Maake (ANC) sought clarity on the Single Police Service and what the third phase of the matter entailed. Was the whole IPID Bill ready in December 2017 as the presentation indicated or was this only in relation to the Constitutional Court order? Feedback was needed on the research done on the CPFs.
Adv Bell replied that in hindsight, the Secretariat should only have looked at matters raised in the Constitutional Court judgment. Gaps in the legislation were however identified which were found to be severely hampering the operations of the Directorate so the opportunity was taken to address some of these gaps - this came at the cost of not meeting the deadline. This was a misjudgment on the behalf of the Secretariat. The change in leadership also did not assist in drafting the Bill and caused somewhat of a delay. The IPID Bill was ready and drafted in 2017. Given all processes to follow, including publishing for comments, it was realised in the Bill could not be tabled in January 2018 that the Secretariat was asked to meet.
With the Single Police Service, the third phase entailed consulting with the Metro Chiefs on the draft framework.
Mr Maake asked if the manual for the CPFs was currently on hold or if it could be used as of now.
Mr Rapea said the matter of payment with SASSETA must be finalised because without it the developers would not provide the manual. There was a new administrator in SASSETA and matters had to begin from scratch. It was hoped the matter would be sorted out by the next quarter and that there was a manual next year to use for the training.
The Chairperson found the CSPS to be on the right footing when it came to the regulatory environment – the audit outcome must be continued. A new workable model must be developed for cooperation with stakeholders, namely the DNA Board and the DPCI Judge. Civilian oversight in SA is important looking at the perceptions of the public arising out of the Customer Satisfaction Survey – there is a huge task ahead to restore trust between the police and the public and the CSPS is critical in this regard. A strong and viable CSPS must be seen playing a leading role, giving quality advice to the Minister and assisting the provinces – this should be the MTEF focus. This would be monitored by the Committee. Recommendations would be provided next Wednesday.
2017/18 Annual Report National Forensics Oversight and Ethics Board (NFDD)
Mr Mark Rogers, DNA Board Director, took the Committee through the first Annual Report of the Board noting that by way of situational analysis, key focus areas for 2017/18 included maintaining regular engagement between the Systems Report and Gap Analysis sub-committee and nodal point at the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL). This proved vital for the early identification of potential challenges with respect to administration and management of the NFDD. Challenges however remain with respect to properly defining the scope of the Board’s oversight and advisory functions within the context of the provisions of the DNA Act and the nature and extent of its independence (administrative vs. operational) vis-à-vis the Civilian Secretariat.
Strategic objectives of the Board included:
-to continue training of police officers to ensure section 36D of the DNA Act is operationalised
-to complete the National Forensic DNA Database software development process in conjunction with the ability to effectively perform familial searches
-to activate provincial task teams ensuring that investigative leads are followed up
-support to the Secretariat in finalising the Amendment Bill for the continuation of the convicted offender sampling programme
-facilitate alignment and synchronisation of the Sexual Offences Register with provisions of the DNA Act
-declining stock levels of buccal sample kits
-delays encountered regarding renewal of “evergreen” contracts and ongoing investigations by the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (SCOPA)
-processes initiated to acquire CODIS software from the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) to allow for familial searching
-integration of CODIS with the NFDD is expected to be completed during the latter part of the 2018/19 financial year
-significant decline in the follow up of forensic investigative leads
-the Board will engage all provinces to establish challenges faced and possible long term solutions
Looking at the DNA analysis performance, 428 051 cases were registered and 439 276 finalised representing decreases of 15% and 8% respectively when compared to the data for 2016/17. Average DNA analysis turnaround time and percentage for obtaining a forensic DNA profile from buccal samples is 34 days and 55% respectively from the date of receipt. It is anticipated turnaround times will increase due to challenges faced related to optimal functioning of the DNA system, exacerbated by capacity constraints faced by the State IT Agency (SITA) to effectively manage the system. This will be compounded by delays encountered in the awarding of bids for procurement of DNA consumables and maintenance of critical equipment. Should the continuation of these issues persist without proper resolution, they will drastically affect performance of the FSL in the coming financial year, resulting in more significant delays and consequential backlogs.
With budget allocation challenges, the 2017/18 operational budget of the FSS was supplemented with earmarked CJS funding to support implementation of the DNA Act. Specialised forensic equipment, forensic training and recurring costs, such as DNA consumables, buccal, sexual assault and crime scene sample evidence collection kits, including implementation of transitional arrangements to take buccal samples from convicted offenders, were funded through this earmarked funding. In August 2017 the FSS was informed the earmarked funding must be re-scoped and may not include recurring costs such as DNA consumables for analysis and buccal, sexual assault and crime scene sample evidence collections during the 2018/19 financial year. Addressing this will require increasing the baseline budget for the FSS and decentralising procurement of buccal sample collection kits to provincial level.
Mr Rogers looked at the compliance of taking buccal samples, forensic investigative leads. With the buccal samples, following the expiry of the two-year transitional period in January 2017, a gap exists as no convicted offenders of schedule eight offences were sampled during the two year period. A technical amendment is required to address the omission of an extension provision in the Act in the event the convicted offender population was not sampled within the prescribed period. The Convicted Offender Index is an essential index because of possible links to cold cases and future offences after release. The Amendment Bill seeks to address the gap to ensure continuation of the convicted offender programme whilst at the same time addressing the matter of refusal by convicted offenders to submit their DNA samples. Looking at forensic investigative leads, concerns by the Board regarding the high number of outstanding investigative leads were raised with the National Commissioner on 18 October 2017. The Board communicated its intention to visit all provinces to establish the root cause(s) of the problem and to find ways of addressing these. The proper functioning of these task teams is vital to ensuring all leads are fully investigated in order to apprehend the high number of repeat offenders
Despite challenges faced, the Board continues to improve on its practices and strengthen its governance structures as a means of ensuring it fulfills its oversight mandate. Cooperation with the Biology Unit remains positive and has ensured challenges are timeously identified and solutions are jointly determined. Operational effectiveness of the Board was impacted by a lack of clarity regarding its ideal organisational form, its reporting lines and its relationship with the Civilian Secretariat. Additional constraints relate to the Board’s lack of full control over its budget from the Civilian Secretariat with no consultation regarding its needs. This impacts negatively on the Board, for instance, regarding sourcing office accommodation when it is sharing already crowded office space with the Civilian Secretariat.
The Chairperson asked about the functioning and governance arrangements of the Board – looking at participation and attendance of Board members, there is a concern about the participation of other departments. The Committee would have to compile a budgetary recommendation on the participation of other departments in activities of the Board, unless there was some other reason for non-participation. Looking at the attendance register in the Annual Report, even the attendance of the Civilian Secretariat was not up to scratch. The dilemma was, as seen in the State Owned Entities (SOEs), if the Board did not take responsibility for governance, things go very wrong. The Committee keeps a very close eye on all institutions in the police portfolio. Why was the Civilian Secretariat not at all meetings? Is it correct that its attendance was below 50%?
Ms Vanessa Lynch, Deputy Chairperson of the DNA Board, responded that with participation of other government departments, these members were often given directives by their superiors and the two were conflictual– this created a problem. There were funding constraints in terms of members coming to meet with Parliament but it has since been resolved, at the last meeting of the Board, that budget will be made available for this travel. The other challenge was the short amount of notice given to appear in Parliament. The chairperson was not present because of a United Nations delegation meeting where she had already accepted the invite and flights and accommodation were already paid for.
The Chairperson clarified that he was referring to Board meetings.
Ms Lynch said commitment of Board members generally would be discussed – there are certain members always present and participating and others not. These terms of reference of commitment would be discussed next week– this was also raised by the chairperson as a concern. Many of the concerns raised by Members today would be raised again next week for discussion. If members were not committed to the Board they would need to step down – she could not answer for every member as to why they attended meetings or not. There are a certain amount of meetings, in terms of the Act, that have to be attended by members – this was also dealt with in the Board’s governance rules and procedures. Some members have not complied with this and it would be addressed next week.
Ms Molebatsi asked if members who did not attend Board meetings regularly simply failed to show up.
Ms Lynch answered that there was a register and in terms of the Act, this was a reason to be removed by the Minister. The Minister would have to be notified of this noncompliance for a new Board member to be appointed.
The Chairperson noted that the Act said more than three meetings. He requested this information be provided to the Committee and forwarded to the Minister.
Ms Lynch agreed saying that Board members applied for the position and knew the commitments, apart from the members appointed by their departments.
Ms Kohler Barnard asked how many oversight operations the Board did over the national forensic DNA database in the last financial year. Another obligation of the Board was to ensure ethical, legal and social implications of DNA usage in criminal investigations is considered – was the public writing to the Board at all? Was it raising any matters with the Board? If there was no input, this mandate should be changed. One still sensed agitation in the relationship between the Board and the Secretary. How is it possible that after all this time there is still a problem with the definition of the oversight scope of the Board and advisory functions? There was also definition of the Board’s independence in relation to the Secretariat – this same matter could not be discussed year in and year out. This must be finalised – the two bodies should be locked in a room with no key until this was resolved. People were reporting about the shortage of buccal sample kits – one officer was in huge trouble for saying there were no kits in the Eastern Cape. How far was the Board involved, if at all, in SAPS’ effort to be granted leave for some emergency short-term contract? What caused the delay in aligning the sexual offences register? Was it because the register was basically useless and empty? She asked if the Committee messed up the legislation – she apologised for this not knowing this was the result. She sought more explanation on the earmarked funding no longer covering DNA consumables for analysis and buccal and sexual assault and crime scene sample collections – who would pay for this? Where would the money come from? It was already seen the convicted offender list was only 68 000 which was a joke in relation to the number of convictions per annum. Were there penalties for SAPS members who refused to take samples?
Ms Molebatsi asked where the Chairperson of the Board was. What was the progress in the training of buccal swab taking of existing police members, not the new intake? Has the situation improved of convicted offenders refusing to give samples?
Ms Lynch replied that the transitional systems and gaps committee had regular meetings with the DNA database manager on the statistics of the number of expungements for the number of entries loaded onto the national forensic DNA database and requests to remove any profile from the database. Part of the duty of the subcommittee is to check this against other samples received, number of profiles analysed, number of samples taken in training etc to ensure there were no reporting gaps – the committee functioned as an oversight check and balance.
Regarding ethical matters, no complaints were raised by the public to date. Hopefully soon the website will be up and running and the public can reach the Board directly through this portal. Currently the Board can be contacted through the Secretariat or directly through Board members. The Board should exist irrespective of the fact that there are no public complaints yet because if ever a complaint did arise the Board should be there to deal with it. Every country that had a DNA database always has some form of ethical oversight.
Ms Lynch said relations between the Board and Secretariat were strained. Next week on 16 October 2018, there would be a meeting of the full contingent of the Board to discuss the relationship challenge, functioning of the Board, governance rules and procedures, the Act, expectations, oversight role and function etc and hopefully this would result in a clearer understanding. The first strategic session held a couple of years ago was about putting the subcommittees together etc.
The situation of the buccal sample kits was catastrophic. Reference samples were simply not received by laboratories because there were not kits to take the samples with. The evidence kits would also start running out – this would be more catastrophic considering a rape survivor who cannot have a sample taken because there were no kits to do so. The Board was trying to deal with this by meeting with supply chain management because the third tender that went out was not awarded. Supply chain must explain what the next step is – this would be heard at a meeting next week. It was understood the dilemma was the one supplier that complied with the specifications, was under investigation. It is a fact that reference samples have literally run out in some police stations. if this continued, the next report would not only show declining levels but nothing to report on in terms of profiles loaded, profiles analysed, samples received or hits on the database. When the amendment comes through to sample the convicted offenders, and supply chain management resolved the problems, the backlog would be huge because an influx of samples would be received. The bid specifications required a South African company supply the kits – the kits have to be of a certain quality because of the risk of contamination and they have to be a certain size to fit into the machines for the sample runs. Next week the Board would ask supply chain what the solution is. 20 international suppliers were provided by the Board as possible solutions or to, at the very least, go on a contract-basis with one of these companies to supply the kits. The Board met with supply chain on this matter in May and June – by that time the second bid went through but supply chain was looking for another third bid.
The Chairperson asked if foreign bids might assist.
Ms Lynch agreed but currently the bid specifications did not allow it. The contract would be the emergency. Bid adjudication committees also worked in confidence and did not provide reasons. Hopefully more information would be provided in the meeting next week.
The Chairperson reminded Members that the Committee would be meeting with supply chain management so this matter could also be discussed then.
Ms Lynch responded to other questions – the budget the Board received was fine but what still needed to be ironed out was what it could do with it. The training was going well although there was now the challenge of sample kits – the officers needed to be trained to use the kits but there were no kits to use for this purpose. Unless the supplier had kits, training could not be done. The number of officers trained on a national basis has got to the point where the recommendation would be to make this a mandatory provision that every officer has to take a sample. Challenges were not raised by the training committee except the supply of kits.
Mr Ramatlakane did not understand the matter of refusal to provide samples– this should be further elucidated to the Committee. Much as these offenders had the right, some of these rights caused constrains and there must be compliance with certain requirements. It was seen in the presentation that matters were not improving – was this the correct reading? If this was correct, what must be done to help resolve this problem if the problem was beyond the capability of the Board? He feared the Committee would be accomplices in the crime. Members should be guided on how best it could intervene.
Ms Lynch responded that when one looked back at the initial reporting years of the Board, the increase was quite phenomenal in terms of the number of profiles analysed, the number loaded onto the database, the number of cases investigated and training. The equipment granted and consumables were very expensive – the JCPS funding was always necessary because there was more funding there to facilitate funding of consumables. With this funding taken away, maintenance contracts not renewed, supply kits and the amendment not taking place, these effective, functioning systems providing the impetus for the national forensic DNA database to operate as it should, has started falling by the wayside. The situation was going from bad to worse unless these challenges were resolved. Yet when speaking to people in the forensic science laboratory, the number of serials they were picking up from the national forensic database was phenomenal – the database was still working with the little information it got but the problem was the scope.
Ms Mmola noted that the last time the Committee met with the DNA Board, there were disagreements or infighting between the Board and the Secretariat – was this resolved? She questioned the difference between registered and finalised cases. Was there a positive response from the National Commissioner on the high number of outstanding investigative leads? What happened in the cases where the suspects were unknown? Were they withdrawn? Was the DNA Board submitting monthly reports to the Minister?
Mr Rogers said the office of the National Commissioner provided a list of the heads of all task teams in the provinces and stated the task teams were functioning but there was no other information provided.
Ms Mmola asked if the Board followed up on this – it was now a year later.
Mr Rogers responded that the systems support committee decided to meet, after this response from the office of the National Commissioner was received, with the task team nodal points to get a better understanding of the challenges on the ground and what potential solutions were. The intention was to meet with other provinces to see if there were any similarities in the challenges being faced across provinces or if challenges were unique to certain areas. It is likely the same challenges are experienced by other task teams in other provinces.
Ms Lynch added the draft regulations were amended in terms of what the Board thought it should look like regarding assisting the task teams with funding and their operations. This was submitted to the National Commissioner – a response was awaited.
Mr Rogers said monthly reports were not sent to the Minister – reports were sent on a needs basis. A report was sent on the buccal samples to alert the Minister and National Commissioner.
Ms Mmola asked if the Board was meeting with the Minister – the Minister was responsible for the National Commissioner and everybody, and was responsible for oversight. What was happening? This was confusing.
Mr Rogers said the Board wrote to the Minister to request a meeting to raise these challenges, and others that the Board faced. Because of recent events, the Minister’s schedule was a bit hectic but his office has committed to arranging the meeting – it was initially scheduled to happen a few weeks ago but it had to be cancelled because of the Minister’s other engagements. There was weekly follow up to find out when the Minister was available because it was long overdue.
Ms Mmola said the Board was not serious about its work because it has not met with the Minister since he was appointed earlier this year – the Minister cannot be busy since the day he was appointed. The Board raised challenges it faced but could not secure a meeting with the Minister. These challenges would continue to persist if the Board did not even bother to meet with the Minister. This was not good.
Mr Maake highlighted the challenges of the Board kept cropping up. The question of the scope of the Board’s advisory functions within the Act and the nature and extent of its independence vis-à-vis the Secretariat, has always been there. The Board must develop its own governance rules and procedures in accordance with the DNA Act. These matters must be in black and white. Was this not outlined in the legislation or regulations? The Member found this confusing as these questions cropped up every time.
Ms Lynch said the Board, in terms of its function, how many Board meetings it should have, structure etc were all set out in the Act but this did not assist with how the Board must really manage and operate on a day-to-day basis with the budget etc – these matters were not in the Act, regulations or governance rules and procedures but will hopefully be added following the strategic planning session. A copy would be submitted to the Committee to see the governance structure of the Board going forward.
The Chairperson raised the matter of the amendment to the Act which was hoped to be done in this financial year – Parliament will be closing next year and there is no movement in the legislative agenda of Parliament. What other steps can be taken? The alternative was for the Sixth Parliament to deal with it – this would only be in the latter half of next year. What would happen with the many cases of buccal swabs? This was a major matter requiring more discussion.
Ms Lynch replied that the reason the two year restriction was originally applied was because of the expectation given by SAPS and the Department of Correctional Services that the approximately 160 000 convicted offenders would be sampled within two years. Unfortunately, due to various reasons, the two years expired and not all samples were provided. There was no condition for if this expectation did not occur. From the time that the amendment was put forward, there were a number of Ministers to date and each Minister had a different requirement in terms of the information they wanted as to why the amendment was necessary. The amendment had been made to be substantive instead of administrative. The current Minister indicated he wanted to extend it even further. Refusal was not the problem anymore because convicted offenders were simply not being sampled. There might be a new Minister next year with new indications on the amendment. She did not know if it was possible to make the matter a Committee Bill or if there was another way to address the urgency. Without samples the convicted offender index cannot operate as intended.
Mr Maake asked if it was possible for the matter to be worked out in the regulations because it would be the easiest way.
Ms Lynch responded that there were a number of suggestions on how to get around the matter. It might be difficult because it was specifically in the Act and strictly interpreted by the convicted offenders who were obviously glad to not give their samples. She did not know what else could be done except for insisting on an amendment. She did not know if the Committee could assist in getting the amendment through before Parliament closed.
Ms Kohler Barnard found the legislation to be crystal clear in that if a convicted criminal refused to provide a sample, a Judge could instruct it and if needs be, the person could be held down. Three hairs were needed – the option was to have hair pulled out of the body or the sample was taken. She did not understand the discussion that prisoners refused to comply – the legislation did not give them the right to refuse giving a sample.
Ms Lynch recalled the use of force being discussed at length during the parliamentary deliberations on the Bill – at the time a lot of police brutality was reported and the use of force was specifically excluded with regard to taking of samples.
Ms Kohler Barnard emphasised the case where convicted offenders refused to provide samples should go to court for the Judge to instruct it – there is a reason why these offenders did not want to provide a sample.
Ms Lynch said the refusal was less of a problem given that offenders were simply not being sampled at all. An interim measure could be a warrant issued for a person of interest to allow for a sample to be taken before the amendment was processed – this would be looked at. Usually one would just tell the offender he/she has to go to the doctor and blood could be drawn. Until the amendment comes into place, there was no specific clause for refusals.
Ms Kohler Barnard found the Act gazetted in 2014 to be clear that the National Commissioner of SAPS and Correctional Services are instructed to ensure buccal samples are taken within two years of any person serving a term of imprisonment on any offence in Schedule Eight – the sample could be taken even if the offender was on parole or released. She did not see where in the Act it said samples should not be taken anymore – she asked the section causing the stoppage be highlighted. The Act said if a person does not consent to the taking of a sample, a warrant may be issued by a Judge or Magistrate to get it done. A prisoner sentenced for raping 50 women cannot refuse to provide a sample – they have to. Perhaps someone could point this out in the legislation to the correctional services officials.
Adv Bell emphasised the amendment dealt with transitional arrangements – no Act that comes into law was retrospective so the law did not apply to those already in prison. This necessitated the transitional arrangements because the two years had expired on the arrangements. The Bill was drafted and was there so having a Committee Bill would not solve the problem. It was proposed the Bill be introduced bypassing all other processes such as publishing as only inmates were really concerned with this Bill. This could not be done in the regulations because the regulation must have an enabling provision in the principal body of the main Act.
Ms Kohler Barnard asked if the transitional arrangements simply lapsed after two years, as if they never existed.
Ms Lynch indicated it said within two years of commencement of the section which was from the date it was promulgated. It was made operational in January 2015 and it said the samples must be taken within two years of the Act coming into operation.
Mr Nkojoana said it was not because of finances that the Board was not able to do anything – in 2016/17 the Board was given R650 000. Acknowledging the fact that a Director and Deputy Director would be appointed, the Board was given R3.1 million in 2017/18 but of this there was change of about R1.1 million. The things the Board was complaining about…
Ms Lynch interjected to say the Board was not complaining.
Ms Mmola urged the Chairperson to chair the meeting.
Mr Nkojoana said the challenges experienced by the Board were also experienced by the Secretariat such as building accommodation.
The Chairperson said the Committee would compile recommendations by next week.
IPID’s Annual Performance Report and Financial Statement 2017/18 Financial Year
Mr Robert McBride, IPID Executive Director, provided an overview of the report noting the Directorate improved on its audit outcome from qualified in 2016/17 to unqualified in 2017/18 – the Directorate continued with its strategy of working towards a clean audit by putting in place systems and controls for improvement. There was a reduction in Compensation of Employees by R14 million as a result of a reduction in staff (414 to 388) and freezing of posts. The total workload was 9 414 with the same reduced resources. There was a backlog of 3 446 and an intake of 5 651 – there was a significant reduction in input by 19%. There was a significant improvement in the Department’s performance from 34% last year to 65% this year. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed with the Inspector-General of Intelligence which immediately yielded tremendous results in high impact low volume approach to investigating corruption. Office accommodation was still not yet resolved – IPID would meet with DPW. He hoped the meeting would not be a waste of time as IPID experienced in the past. The building was not compliant with health and safety matters – the recent fire in Johannesburg was an indication of what could happen. The building IPID was currently accommodated in had one exit and one entrance. There was no assembly place except 200 meters away, across two streets in another building. If one exited the building too quickly, taxis coming from Marabastad could knock one over. Litigation was an ongoing matter. This was expected in a young democracy and seen in other countries. However it was hoped the courts would not always be used as a resort for clarification of interpretation of the law. As a result of the constrained budget, four satellite offices were closed – this did not mean services were no longer provided but the overheads associated with running these offices were reduced. Savings from this were added to transport and subsistence. The Department was constantly looking at reprioritisation. There was an inability to maintain ICT infrastructure which affected business operations – budget would be ring fenced for ICT upgrades and maintenance in future. It was unlikely that IPID would implement recommendations of the Farlam Commission without an increase in budget from the fiscus. There were inadequate working tools for investigations which led to capacity constraints.
IPID’S Financial Statement 2017/18
Mr Victor Senna, IPID CFO, took the Committee through legislative requirements. With the 2017/18 audit outcomes, the Directorate achieved an unqualified audit outcome. The report of the audit of compliance with legislation noted irregular expenditure due to contract extension exceeding the 15% threshold - the request for approval of the disclosed irregular expenditure was submitted to National Treasury in November 2017 however by the end of the financial year, approval was not yet granted. Payments were not made within 30 days or an agreed period after receipt of an invoice, as required by Treasury Regulations. This was due to budgetary constraints experienced by the Department which led to majority of prior year accruals being settled after 30 days. Both reported findings are beyond the control of the Department.
The presentation then provided a summary of the audited programme expenditure over two financial years, namely 2017/18 and 2016/17. Looking at key disclosure areas, under virements, the Department has, in the year under review, implemented a virement for an amount of R3. 6 million approved by the Executive Director, in terms of Section 43 of the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA), to address the projected budget shortfall reported in Programme Two: Investigations and Information Management mainly in travel and accommodation and legal costs. The approved virement amount was made of R2 716 000 and R914 000 which were reallocated from Programme One: Administration and Programme Three: Compliance Monitoring and Stakeholder Management respectively due to delays in filling some funded vacancies. The Department did not apply for roll over in the year under review. The Department did not incur unauthorised expenditure in the year under review. The reported amount in the financial statements is made of prior years over expenditure by the then Independent Complaints Directory (ICD`s) Programme Three and Two in the financial year 2005/06 and 2008/09 respectively. The submission, with supporting documents requesting authorisation of the disclosed amount, has since been submitted to the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (SCOPA) through National Treasury for its consideration, however by the reporting date (31 March 2018), approval for authorisation was not yet granted. The Department has in the financial year under-disclosed an amount of R5 000 due to interest incurred as a result of late payment caused by budget constraints and overtime claimed not in accordance to the granted approval. The R2 000 of the above amount was subsequently approved for write off by the Executive Director whilst the R3 000 for claimed overtime was reported to the Financial Misconduct Committee for evaluation and decision making. The Department has in the year under review registered in the irregular expenditure register and disclosed in the Annual Financial Statements an expenditure amounting to R6. 2 million on the contract extension which exceeded the thresholds without National Treasury approval. The request for approval of the disclosed irregular expenditure was submitted to National Treasury in November 2017 however by the end of the financial year, approval was not yet granted. All referred contracts (cleaning and security services) have since been terminated and renewed with new service providers. The irregular reported expenditure was accumulated since 2006 up until the date termination.
Mr Senna said focused areas to improve accountability included strengthening internal controls, ensuring compliance with applicable legislation and improving the audit outcome to a clean audit. The presentation then addressed the audit of predetermined objectives and an overview of non-financial performance for 2017/18.
Programme One: Administration
Ms Nomkhosi Netsianda, IPID Chief Director: Corporate Services, took Members through the presentation touching on strategic indicators, targets and output. Targets not achieved included:
-% implementation of Annual Internal Audit Plan: timing of provincial audit reviews affected execution of head office planned audits
Strategies to overcome areas of underperformance included conducting provincial audit reviews earlier in the year, prioritising rolled over audit reviews for April 2018 and review of the internal audit target in line with resources.
Investigations and Information Management
Mr Matthews Sesoko, IPID Head: Programme Two took Members through the presentation touching on strategic indicators, targets and output. Targets not achieved included:
-percentage of decision ready cases finalised: target not achieved due to constrained resources, travelling long distances in vast provinces and outstanding technical reports
-percentage of investigations of deaths as a result of police action that are decision ready: target not achieved due to constrained resources, travelling long distances in vast provinces and outstanding technical reports
-percentage of investigations of cases of the discharge of an official firearm by a police officer that are decision ready: target not achieved due to constrained resources, travelling long distances in vast provinces and prioritisation of cases
-percentage of torture that are decision ready: target not achieved due to constrained resources, travelling long distances in vast provinces and prioritisation of cases
-percentage of investigations of assault that are decision ready: target not achieved due to constrained resources, travelling long distances in vast provinces and prioritisation of cases
-percentage of investigations of other criminal and misconduct matters referred to in section 28 (1) (h) and 35 (1) (b) of the IPID Act that are decision ready: target not achieved due to constrained resources, travelling long distances in vast provinces and prioritisation of cases
-percentage of all backlog decision ready cases finalised excluding cases of systemic corruption: target not achieved due to constrained resources, travelling long distances in vast provinces and prioritisation of cases
Looking at performance in the programme, with the case intake, IPID experienced a decrease in the number of cases reported as compared with the previous financial year (2016/17) and there was an overall decrease of 19%. The decrease was noted in most categories except in torture cases, death as a result of police action cases and non-compliance with IPID Act cases. Most provinces experienced a decrease when compared with the previous financial year, with the exception of Limpopo and Mpumalanga.
Ms Marianne Moroasui, IPID Chief Director: Legal Services, took Members through the presentation touching on strategic indicators, targets and output. Targets not achieved included:
-percentage of written legal opinions provided to the Department within 21 working days of request: target not achieved due to capacity constraints as a result of vacant and frozen posts
-percentage of contracts finalised within 30 working days request: target not achieved due to capacity constraints as a result of vacant and frozen posts
-percentage of civil and labour litigation matters attended: target not achieved due to capacity constraints as a result of vacant and frozen posts
-percentage of Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA) requests processed and finalised within 30 days: target not achieved due to capacity constraints as a result of vacant and frozen posts
Strategies to overcome areas of underperformance included aligning targets with reduced staff complement whilst waiting for the unfreezing of posts and for more positions to be added to the staff complement.
Programme Four: Compliance Monitoring and Stakeholder Management
Mr Moses Dlamini, IPID Acting Chief Director: Programme Four, took Members through the presentation touching on strategic indicators, targets and output. All targets in the programme were exceeded.
Mr McBride concluded the presentation by noting there were many gaps and space for improvement. There will be continuous monitoring of strategies – some areas of improvement might come at a cost to others given the limited and shrinking budget. IPID endeavored to improve performance and systems. The high value, low volume approach would continue. Systemic corruption in the police was still a festering sore – it is unlikely to be resolved any time soon because it has taken a long time to entrench itself. The increase in death as a result of police and torture remains a concern – in the last six months of the current financial year, IPID noticed an alarming increase. In the last two or three months, there were three cases of death by torture in KZN. Many reasons can be ascribed to this but this action with impunity was concerning. Another concern was the use of state and police resources to resist accountability – this was an endemic, cultural problem in SAPS. The police did not like being investigated – some retraining on constitutionalism and accountability needs to be included in the curricula. IPID would continue to engage stakeholders to move towards greater independence. It should be a normal course of events that IPID was part of SAPS’s disciplinary processes because the Directorate would do a good and honest job – it might be better for the police to be investigated by IPID instead of some of their seniors who might have a bone to pick with them. If the ICT structure improved, there would be improvement in IPID’s core priorities and performance. IPID was working on improving financial performance in line with the recommendations of the AGSA through management action plans.
The Chairperson welcomed that IPID moved from a qualified to unqualified audit outcome – he emphasised the importance of ensuring clean audit outcomes for all entities within the police portfolio. IPID is an oversight institution and must set the example. In its briefing with the AGSA on Tuesday, it was clear to the Committee that most of the matters can be addressed – the Civilian Secretariat had much bigger challenges but there was a concerted effort from management to deal with this sharply and with a push from the Committee, the Secretariat achieved a clean audit. The IPID presentation spoke to a three year period to graduate – the AGSA raised matters relating to consequence management, inadequate internal control and record keeping. These were management matters – it was clear from the presentation that the structure was there but there must be faster action to the recommendations of the AGSA. This applied to all in the police portfolio. Control came down to consequence management – the
Executive Director must crack the whip. If prescripts were not upheld there must be consequence management – this was also a dilemma in the entire policing environment. Was there satisfaction with the technical skills in the finance group? Most of the matters raised by the AGSA can be addressed by strict management. Last week there was a march to Parliament of an active community grouping complaining about gang violence – other matters raised in the march was police corruption in the areas where members of SAPS were allegedly in cahoots with local drug lords, illegal gun smuggling etc. The Committee had arranged a special meeting for 21 November and IPID would be invited to provide its perspective on the matter. In terms of the trend and complaints originating from these communities of alleged police corruption, should this not also be a focus in terms of the current environment? Should IPID take responsibility in dealing with these matters?
Mr McBride responded to the matter of consequence management, and IPID being an example, noting that some findings would simply always remain unless the Directorate got more money – this was the bottom line. Going back to the 2013/14 Annual Report, this was the same story. Looking at consequence management in SAPS, SAPS is a big organisation – more than 200 000 members. In an IPID investigation a few years ago, there was a Brigadier who resigned while under investigation – he came back as a Major General and now has 57 companies with relationships with SAPS service providers with big money involved. This decision was taken somewhere and there was no explanation for it. When consequence management took place in IPID, it got instruction from the Minister not to run any disciplinary against the individual – this was untenable because there should be no interference. A bulletproof vest cost R30 000 – one did not need IPID to say something was wrong with this. People went abroad for training on SAPS’ budget but these were not police officers – these individuals then entered the DPCI and after a few months were smuggled into the murky water of Crime Intelligence. There was no cooperation from Crime Intelligence on any of this. There was constant bumping of heads on the matter of classification. It is surprising that Crime Intelligence is not aware there is no legislation that establishes it – there was nothing in the SAPS Act or any other legislation. There is oversight legislation, the Intelligence and Oversight Act and the National Strategic Intelligence Act, which assumed Crime Intelligence as a service. IPID is a creature of the Constitution and legislation, but there was nothing like this for Crime Intelligence. Some people who failed their security clearance were busy classifying documents which had nothing to do with national security – it had to do with corruption and procurement. These same people with no clearance were denying IPID documents – wrong classification of documents defeated the ends of justice. IPID received no help on this. On the highest level it was clear people are appointed to carry out nefarious activities in SAPS. In IPID’s experience a career policeman often means a most corrupt policeman. These policemen went out of their way to protect each other, unashamedly so.
Consequence management within SAPS is key. IPID would conduct consequence management on its side. Many scurrilous activities were taking place with funds not budgeted for such as the Integrated Justice System funds – these funds were managed by SAPS and none of the other justice organs had any slice of it. The sums of money under discussion were large. It seemed people were promoted for wrong doing. IPID has noticed an improvement in being alerted to incidents and willingness to cooperate by middle management. There was abuse of state resources with impunity. IPID was investigating a case of this by someone from national in the Eastern Cape – this information was being hidden but it was a fait accompli and IPID would prove the case.
Mr Sesoko said a dedicated project approach was needed for the community protest complaints by engaging the communities to get information to establish the extent of the scope and capacity to deal with it. This is something IPID would definitely look at.
Mr Senna agreed that it was critical for IPID to move faster to achieve a clean audit. As long as IPID had the challenge of underfunding and accruals, it would be hard to achieve the target of paying suppliers within 30 days – this was outside of IPID’s control. Interventions within the control of IPID, such as misstatements and improving internal controls, are being attended to to achieve the clean audit - IPID was committed to this.
Ms Mmola congratulated the Directorate on its unqualified audit outcome – she urged the Department to work hard to strive towards a clean audit. She asked for an explanation on how complaints on civilians were conducted – during 2017/18, nine civilians were investigated on charges of rape in police custody.
What was meant by target not achieved due to “prioritisation of cases”? In programme three, was there an increase in the number of collaborations with other government departments in 2018/19 to reach more communities? What was the current status of the engagement with Treasury to have legal services reinstated as a budget programme of the Department?
Mr Sesoko responded that the Act provided for IPID to investigate rape in police custody – it was found some rape in police custody was not perpetrated by SAPS members but by civilians who were inmates. IPID looked at the circumstances which made it possible for this rape to happen in the custody of the police and who was responsible for this rape. Prioritisation of cases referred to resources available – cases were prioritised based on resource constrains. A strategic decision was taken to prioritise death in police custody, death as a result of police action, corruption etc. While all section 28 matters were investigated, the emphasis of prioritisation differed. For example, if today a case of death and a case of assault came in, the case of death would be prioritised. This prioritisation was seen in the performance of the Directorate as most targets were achieved in areas prioritised.
Ms Netsianda said Legal Services will be reinstated as a budget programme from the 2019/20 financial year.
Mr Dlamini outlined that IPID would continue to work with other stakeholders on community outreach. IPID’S biggest partner was the Public Protector but it also worked with other stakeholders such as the Department of Justice.
Ms Kohler Barnard asked if IPID looked at who put the civilian accused of rape in the cell. There were cases where women were put in male cells and gang raped by 11 or 12 men. Recently SAPS paid out nearly R1 million for arresting an old white farmer in a white car, told him to admit to stealing petrol, chucked him a cell, he was beaten and threatened with rape. When he went to court, the note said it was a black woman in a red car. This was a deliberate, almost torture tactic – was IPID called to investigate this? She was concerned this was becoming a common occurrence. A woman, on the phone to her mother, was shot at in her car. She died and the police did not tell anyone this happened until the bullet holes were seen in her car. It was found no one was guilty because they did not know who fired the shots. After all these years SAPS was still treating IPID with contempt.
Mr Sesoko noted these were the kind of matters IPID looked at i.e. the circumstances which made it possible for the rape to occur in police custody and where the police was when the incident occurred because no one expected to be raped while in police custody – one would expect to be safe and the police were responsible for maintaining this safety. It was found there would be reporting but there was an increase in statistics in relation to non-compliance with section 29 of the IPID Act. IPID would find out about cases after the fact as SAPS failed to report. There were also challenges around prosecuting of these cases. When IPID found out about cases not reported, the matter would be investigated and criminal charges would be laid in terms of section 33 of the IPID Act.
Ms Molebatsi congratulated IPID on the unqualified audit but also emphasised the need to work towards a clean audit outcome. She asked if the 17 additional posts were approved by the Department of Public Service and Administration. She sought more information on the extension of contracts without approval. What initiatives were taken to ensure the filling of eight vacant posts in the Senior Management Service (SMS)? 14 disputes were lodged during the 2017/18 financial year of which one was upheld, three were dismissed and 10 were pending – what about the rest of the disputes?
Mr Senna said the contracts extended without Treasury approval was security and cleaning – the contracts ended but continued on a month-to-month basis until they were terminated. This was due to the challenge of internal capacity – there was only one person in the contract management unit. This person studied chemistry and would have to be capacitated to manage contracts. Contract management was centralised in the office Deputy Director: Supply Chain to ensure there was an accurate register of all contracts and ensure all contracts were extended on time. One of the posts of the 27 additional posts was for a Director of Contract Management to assist the Directorate in monitoring contracts better.
Mr McBride added that in 2014, his office requested the security contract go out on tender after the specs were worked out. The instability of 2015 caused the approach to security to change to make all security in-house so there was stagnation in this process until it was going again. This was the reason why there was a problem with the contract of security and cleaning.
Ms Netsianda said the total number of SMS posts at the end of the financial year reported on was 36 from level 11 to 15. Eight positions were vacant including provincial heads and directors due to the freezing of posts by DPSA. The positions were however still on the structure and needed to be reported on even though they were frozen such as Director: Legal Services and CFO. Most of these positions have since been filled such as the three provincial heads, Director: Strategy and CFO. The rest of the positions were being filled.
Ms Kohler Barnard was concerned and questioned the reason behind the reduced intake by a significant amount – was it because some satellite offices were closed down? Is it because the conduct of SAPS has improved? How long has IPID been in the Roux Shabangu building and did it have any idea of when it would get out of it? Would it be a major cost implication if IPID upgraded its IT infrastructure and then changed building accommodation? In some instances there seemed to be misalignment between expenditure and performance – while the Directorate was severely constrained financially, it did have 17 more employees than the approved personnel establishment. She did not see how this could happen. 10 grievances and 14 disputes was a relatively high number for a relatively small organisation – why was this so? Was IPID still finding SAPS failed to inform it of obvious misconduct such as discharge of a firearm, rape, cell escapes etc? This was seen in non-compliance up by 11%. Was IPID still relying on informers and media reports? Of the IPID investigations, few people were held to account – was this the fault of IPID? How would this problem be fixed? The backlog was increasing – what would be done about this? She asked if IPID was working collaboratively with SAPS on lifestyle audit outcomes. In many cases, senior Generals could not get security clearance – IPID should be involved in investigating why this was.
Ms Netsianda said the Minister approved the structure but the concurrence was still awaited from the Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA) – there was follow up on a weekly basis.
Mr Maake asked what happened if the Minister approved but DPSA did not.
Ms Netsianda noted the public service regulations said the Minister of DPSA must concur with the Minister. There were incidents where DPSA did not concur with the approval and IPID needed to resubmit. The Minister would write to the DPSA Minister asking for consideration and concurrence of the structure.
Mr Maake asked what could give rise to DPSA not concurring.
Ms Netsianda explained every newly created post must go through the job evaluation process. It must then be approved by the Minister and DPSA must confirm that the evaluation took place as stipulated in the Public Service Act and public service regulations. It was said this was a control measure because departments were abusing the job evaluation process.
Mr Maake asked if IPID felt there was any difference in the conduct of the police in any way. If so, which areas were improving or becoming worse? Did IPID feel it was making a difference?
Mr Sesoko indicated the backlog would be dealt with and there was a specific target on it. IPID did not want an increased backlog where some cases could not be investigated. The strategy was to meet the target on the backlog and the provinces were asked to assist each other. The reality was that as long as the financial situation of IPID did not change, the capacity situation would also not change and it would be likely that the backlog would remain for some time. It is the priority of Programme Two to deal with this. There are matters where the National Prosecuting Authority declined to prosecute – this did not mean IPID did not conduct a proper investigation. The decision to decline to prosecute may be a result of no evidence to enable prosecution. IPID engaged the NPA in cases where it declined to prosecute but the Directorate felt there was a strong case for prosecution. At some point there was discussion of IPID instituting a legal review because there was non agreement of the decision. The evidence was guiding – some of IPID investigations found no crime was committed and the SAPS member would be exonerated. There are a high number of cases of exoneration based on the investigation and evidence. It was IPID’s constitutional role to conduct independent investigations to provide an outcome on whether a crime was committed or not. The matter of the reduction of intake was not easy to answer because IPID could not influence the number of cases which came. Statistical information of IPID showed there was a reduction in the number of cases of corruption. The high-profile investigations were highly publicised and it was believed this was a deterrent to members at a lower level. A Department of Performance Management and Evaluation (DPME) survey showed there was high recognition for the work IPID did. No scientific research was done on the reasons for the reduction of intake and these factors could be contributory. SAPS members on the ground felt the effects of the work of IPID and this could also influence the numbers.
Mr Senna said the matter of acquiring a new building came about after the court deemed the existing lease agreement invalid. DPW went out on tender twice but were claiming a building could not be found. It seemed there was no willingness of DPW to assist IPID to get a building. Treasury tried to intervene in the matter and a meeting was called last month with DPW and IPID after which it was agreed a task team would be established to identify a building within two to three months. Treasury already gave DPW a deviation so it should be easy to find a building in this time. Another meeting was scheduled for next week so it was hoped this would yield results.
The Chairperson said IPID should also attend the meeting arranged in November with DPW, SAPS and the Secretariat on the matter of accommodation. IPID should prepare a presentation for this interaction.
Ms Kohler Barnard asked if the opinion of IPID was that DPW did this deliberately because everyone knew the current building belonged to Roux Shabangu. DPW was asked on many occasions how many buildings it rented from Mr Shabangu. These buildings were slums where toilets and lifts did not work. It seemed what was being done to IPID was obvious as it was also done to virtually every other government department.
Mr McBride agreed that this action was deliberate and it was IPID’s opinion that this was down to corruption. The Directorate was approached with offers to buy the building but IPID was not kind in its response.
Ms Netsianda added that she was handling the matter personally and when she would have meetings with DPW, someone would phone Mr Shabangu who would be waiting for her at the office by the time the meeting was over to discuss matters under discussion in the meeting. When the advertisement was done someone would come and say it was not done correctly and it would have to be restarted. IPID has been in the building for ten years and Mr Shabangu was getting the full payment every month even though IPID was not paying because the lease was declared null and void and to pay the rent would incur IPID irregular expenditure– it was not known where DPW was getting the money to continue making the payments.
Ms Kohler Barnard asked if the reduction in cases was as a result of some satellite offices closed down.
Mr Sesoko responded that the reality was that the legislation compelled SAPS to report cases to IPID and this was seen in the more than 90% of cases coming from police stations themselves. Closing of the satellite offices influencing reduction in cases was possible because it spoke to accessibility. Access to IPID by the community was important. This confirmed the need for sufficient resources to fund the expansion process.
Mr McBride said it was the normal course of events for there to be grievances. There were occasions were written warnings were issued, the person then said it was a grievance and asked for money. Because the organisation was small, it was easy for people to connive and collaborate on grievances because written warnings were issued. Some incidents were genuine and were dealt with. The joke was that IPID was so small yet had 100 times more drama than any other department. Because it was so small, there were key individuals in key places who abuse the fact that they have the final say on what happened on certain matters. Sometimes Mr McBride needed to check the advice he received on procurement, legal and other matters because there was an angle on occasion. Disputes in the workplace were normal. The competition for posts also increased because the organisation was so small and there was limited upward mobility. Some people had vindictive reasons for grievances – this was experienced. When he began in 2014, Mr McBride found a range of vicious, spiteful, small complaints sent all over the show. Sometimes one took a small frozen puff adder, put it in the jacket and it bites one. The complaints all over the show then required a response instead of focusing on the work at hand – this was all because of one or two vindictive people.
Ms Netsianda added there were ten grievances of which seven were resolved and three were pending. Two of the grievances came from senior managers who are aggrieved because they were given written warnings. There were 14 disputes – one was upheld and the person was paid for unfair labour practice. This case occurred during the 2015/16 financial year but the payment only occurred in August 2017. Three disputes were dismissed because they were not substantiated. Two disputes were lodged by the senior managers aggrieved with written warnings issued against them. The substance was not being disputed but the technicality of the process was.
Mr Mbhele was concerned about challenges highlighted in the ICT environment in that having modern, up-to-date IT infrastructure could minimise or avoid audit risks when it comes to material misstatements and how those processes are managed. It could also be value-add for the core investigative work as well. Given the already very tight fiscal state IPID was in, how confident was it that it could achieve the adequate to optimal reprioritisation to address this area? Once ICT gets attention, it could have a manifold affect on other areas. He was also concerned by the reinvestigation of many cases by SAPS after the IPID recommendation – when the Member asked about it, SAPS always cited regulation eight as the basis for its internal process. Was there a proposed remedy from IPID to this defect? This is something which could be relevant for the IPID Amendment Bill.
Mr McBride said the ICT system improvement would improve performance in the core function. Most of the components of the ICT system are portable and can be moved – the cables would need to be laid again but the service can plugged in if IPID got another building. The flowcentric system was unable to do certain things- IPID was in the process of assessing its efficacy to look at possible alternatives. Mr Sesoko was busy with this.
Mr Senna said ICT was critical to performance. Looking at the Gauteng province, payments were fully automated from beginning to end whereas nationally, accruals had to be calculated manually. He was passionate about this. An internal strategy was pushed on how to modernise ICT within IPID. A funding proposal was sent to National Treasury for the upgrade to be funded through the EU General Budget Support Programme. It has been proven that investing in ICT would produce long term benefits.
Mr Sesoko replied that a workshop was held with the SAPS and the Civilian Secretariat on IPID’s recommendations. The matter was raised sharply with police management in that section 30 of the IPID Act was very clear on what obligations of SAPS are in relation to IPID’s recommendations and that it cannot be that SAPS conducted reinvestigations on what IPID already investigated. This was a waste of resources by government and SAPS investigating itself cannot be considered to be an independent investigation. Recently the Provincial Commissioner in Gauteng decided not to implement disciplinary proceedings against a member based on a reinvestigation – it turned out the member conducting the reinvestigation was every close to the member under investigation. This can never be an independent investigation. This was sharply raised in the workshop as unacceptable. If SAPS did not agree with the recommendation of an IPID investigation, it should engage the Directorate. Despite SAPS committing to do this, the problem of reinvestigation persisted. This must be looked at on a policy level. The IPID Act superseded regulations and the Act must be complied with.
The Chairperson asked for an update on IPID’S own training cadet programme for investigators which was raised by the Directorate in its previous engagement with the Committee.
Mr McBride answered that IPID would need extra budget for training and would need more posts. It was a serious risk for IPID to train people and provide learnerships to only let them out again as they might get snapped up by SAPS. IPID was not an attractive destination for employment because there was no upward mobility and it did not pay as much as the market for the work expected. The legislation must be changed to look at graduates although graduates would not apply if the pay was not right – there were bottom lines and standards of living for people. Until the situation drastically changed it would be difficult to do anything but IPID has approached and had discussions with the African Policing Civilian Oversight Authority (APCOF) which is a NGO which looked at policing oversight on the continent to look at how to deal with this, what was needed and to then look for funding to do it. IPID could then look at a process to look at weaning itself off relying on SAPS. An example was ballistics, IPID would bring new people in and train them, and train the trainers, to create capacity especially in specialised areas. It is hoped this process would be moved forward before the start of the new financial year.
The Chairperson commended IPID for the unqualified audit outcome noting that the Committee thought it could achieve a clean outcome much faster than the CFO anticipated. The Executive Director must crack the whip to ensure compliance and consequence management. The Committee would be monitoring this going forward. IPID is an important institution monitoring that conduct of the police was in line with the Constitution. The Directorate must continue with this work without fear or prejudice.
The meeting was adjourned.
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