Is son of the soil, former freedom fighter and prominent death row prisoner Robert McBride becoming a villain?
The South African Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) wants McBride removed as Ekurhuleni's chief of police because "he is not fit for the job".
"We find his military behavior very unacceptable," said Koena Ramotlou, Samwu's secretary-general.
The union accused McBride of harassing its members and of constantly changing their conditions of employment.
But McBride said in line with his mandate, he had initiated a drive towards professionalism and tighter discipline.
"Some people do not like this and intend to disrupt the programme. We have taken zero-tolerance against corruption, and [these initiatives] are never popular," he said.
McBride said calls for his resignation emanate from people who cannot provide leadership.
He said the present disciplinary codes for metro police and other officials are the same, and he believes it should not be the case.
"Police officers have extensive powers, even deadly force. Ordinary citizens and officials do not have such powers. These widespread powers should be balanced with a higher level of accountability," he said.
But Ramotlou said Samwu members have instructed their leadership to hold a rally to finalise a programme for work stoppage until McBride, "is out of the system of the metro".