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Cop's arrest riles MEC

By unknown | Jan 23, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Kamva Mokoena

Kamva Mokoena

KwaZulu-Natal MEC for safety and liaison Bheki Cele is angry over claims of staff infighting that is threatening to divide the police service in Kokstad.

This follows the arrest of a senior police officer in the area who was frog-marched in handcuffs in full view of members of the public.

The superintendent's arrest is believed to have been triggered by allegations of jealously and ongoing jostling for positions at the local police station.

Superintendent DL Khumalo was arrested two weeks ago and appeared in court on Monday over alleged corruption.

He is out on R1000 bail and is expected to appear in court again on February 4.

He was arrested while he was with a reservist colleague, in full uniform, and driving a state vehicle. Cele labelled the act as "abuse of power" by painting a bad image of the police to the community.

Cele has ordered that provincial police commissioner Hamilton Ngidi should be given a full report or conduct his own investigation into the matter.

Cele says the arrest of a police officer in full view of members of the public forces could lead to ordinary citizens losing trust in the police service.

"Police should not have arrested one of their own in front of the community members, but should have phoned him and asked him to come to the office and be charged.

"We are not saying police officers who break the law should not be arrested," said Cele.

A source at the police station said this was not the first time that a Kokstad police officer had been arrested.

Police officer Siphiwe Mjomle was arrested and spent time in jail after being accused of being an accomplice to murder by allegedly smuggling a sharp weapon into the cells that led to the death of an inmate.

He was found not guilty.

Director of the Kokstad police Thulani Phahla could not be reached for comment.


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