DA leader Tony Leon has asked President Thabo Mbeki to suspend national Police Commissioner Jackie Selebi and appoint a commission of inquiry into allegations of corruption against the country's top cop.
In a letter to Mbeki dated December 4, Leon asked the president to appoint a commission led by a judge. If Mbeki did not do so, this would compromise the office of the national police commissioner and the government's fight against crime.
South Africa could also "ill-afford" the international attention in the run-up to the 2010 Soccer World Cup, Leon said.
Leon's call comes in the wake of allegations against Selebi that he has received bribes and been involved in smuggling.
Selebi has also been accused of interfering in the investigation into the murder of businessman Brett Kebble and of being involved in tender irregularities at OR Tambo Airport.
Questions have also been raised about his friendship with Glen Agliotti, the man arrested recently by the Scorpions in connection with Kebble's murder.
Leon drew a parallel, saying that Mbeki had previously appointed an investigation based on allegations when he appointed the Hefer Commission into allegations that former National Prosecutions Authority boss Bulelani Ngcuka was an apartheid spy.
Ngcuka was subsequently cleared of the allegations.
Mbeki's spokesman Mukoni Ratshitanga was not available for comment yesterday.