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Cops deny MEC's whistleblowing

By unknown | Mar 06, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Frank Maponya

Frank Maponya

Limpopo MEC for roads and transport, Justice Pitso, said he blew the whistle on a cop driving a state vehicle without authorisation at the weekend.

But police deny having arrested anyone.

Pitso said he was alerted to the situation after he had stopped at an accident scene near Chuenespoort on the Polokwane-Burgersfort road on Saturday.

He was on his way back from Sekhukhune. Pitso said the accident involved a Nissan bakkie and a minibus taxi. Both vehicles were badly damaged.

"I stopped to try to help where necessary," said Pitso.

He said though the Nissan bakkie was unmarked, he became suspicious when he realised its driver was a police officer from Magatle, Zebediela.

"I immediately confronted the police officer and asked if he had authority to drive the car," said Pitso.

That is when he discovered the trip was unauthorised because the cop had used the state's car to buy groceries in Polokwane, about 90km away from his work station.

He said, after discovering the crime, he immediately called the police to arrest the police officer, only identified as an Inspector Mathomela of the Magatle police.

"As I speak, other officials are driving state vehicles without authorisation and this is costly for the government," he said.

Pitso said the accident happened when the policeman's vehicle crashed into the rear of the minibus taxi.

"I am happy that the officer has been arrested.

"I hope this will send a message to other government employees who continue to misuse state vehicles for their personal interests."

Pitso said: "This accident means the government is going to lose money in repairing the damaged state vehicle. This must stop now."

He praised the police who came to arrest the offender for their quick response.

"With this kind of cooperation, I bet we are going places in ensuring we run a corruption- free government," he said.

But, Limpopo police spokesman Superintendent Patty Khumalo yesterday denied that the officer had been arrested.

She said he had been charged with reckless and negligent driving. The case would be forwarded to the director for public prosecutions for a decision.


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