Top cop Sithole rallies behind rooting out of corruption within the SAPS

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Deputy National Police Commissioner Bonang Mgwenya is one of 13 people accused of swindling the police out of millions of rands over a tender to supply emergency warning equipment.

National Police Commissioner Khehla Sitole. Picture: @SAPoliceService/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG – National Police Commissioner Khehla Sithole said he supported the rooting out of corruption within the ranks of law enforcement following the latest arrest in connection with the so-called “blue lights” fraud case.

Deputy National Police Commissioner Bonang Mgwenya is one of 13 people accused of swindling the police out of millions of rands over a tender to supply emergency warning equipment.

She made a brief appearance at the Palm Ridge Magistrates Court after she was handcuffed during a pre-dawn raid on Monday morning.

Mgwenya is the latest suspect to be involved in a lucrative contract to install blue lights for 1,500 police vehicles.

She has been released on R20,000 bail, charged with being part of a group who defrauded the government out of R191 million.

The human resources deputy has been charged with corruption, fraud and money laundering.

Mgwenya indicated in her bail application that she intended to plead not guilty to all the charges.

Meanwhile, the national police commissioner said the brazen manner in which police continue to be linked with acts of criminality was disheartening.

His spokesperson Vish Naidoo said: “Sithole has reaffirmed the support of SAPS top management into any and all criminal investigations with any member of the SAPS, stating that nobody is above the law.”

Mgwenya will next month join several others in court who were previously arrested, including former police commissioner Khomotso Phahlane as well as former Gauteng top cop Deliwe De Lange.

SAD BUT NECESSARY ARRESTS

Police Minister Bheki Cele has described the arrest of corrupt police officers as sad, but said it was not about to stop.

Cele was speaking at the launch of Independent Police Investigative Directorate 24-hour hotline which is created for South Africans to call if they know of any officers involved in criminal activity.

The minister’s comments came after Mgwenya’s arrest.

Cele said these arrests were necessary: “It will leave you perplexed if the right thing is not done. We wait for the court to tell us what happened.”

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