MD­LULI milks the sys­tem

For­mer crime in­tel­li­gence boss is still en­joy­ing all the perks of his job, hav­ing earned R4.2m while on sus­pen­sion

CityPress - - Front Page - ABRAM MASHEGO abram.mashego@city­press.co.za

Nearly R4.2 mil­lion. That is what the SA Po­lice Ser­vice (SAPS) has paid for­mer crime in­tel­li­gence boss Richard Md­luli since he was suspended on full pay in 2012.

But that’s not all. Se­nior po­lice sources told City Press this week that Md­luli was also still en­joy­ing other state perks, in­clud­ing a full-time driver and body­guard, a state ve­hi­cle, busi­ness class flights and news­pa­per sub­scrip­tions de­liv­ered to his home on Gaut­eng’s East Rand – all paid for by the po­lice.

City Press un­der­stands that as re­cently as last month, he flew busi­ness class from Jo­han­nes­burg to Cape Town on undis­closed po­lice busi­ness and the po­lice footed the bill.

Four highly placed sources – who are em­ployed by and are close to the crime in­tel­li­gence unit, as well as in se­nior po­lice man­age­ment – said Md­luli was still ben­e­fit­ing from all the perks his post pro­vides.

This week, Md­luli was on trial in the South Gaut­eng High Court on charges of as­sault and kid­nap­ping re­lat­ing to the death of his for­mer lover’s hus­band, Oupa Ramogibe.

In Au­gust, he will be tried in the Pre­to­ria Spe­cialised Com­mer­cial Crimes Court – with for­mer crime in­tel­li­gence chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer Solly Lazarus and fel­low unit mem­ber Hein Barnard – for al­legedly de­fraud­ing the crime in­tel­li­gence unit’s se­cret slush fund.

Md­luli is also al­leged to have em­ployed his fam­ily mem­bers as in­for­mants and went on over­seas trips us­ing cash from the fund.

SAPS spokesper­son Lieu­tenant Gen­eral Solomon Mak­gale con­firmed that Md­luli was still re­ceiv­ing his state salary, say­ing he had been suspended on full pay. Mak­gale re­fused to com­ment on why Md­luli still had the use of a state ve­hi­cle, as well as a driver and body­guard.

Md­luli is a pow­er­ful po­lice of­fi­cer who has close ties to Pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma and se­nior of­fi­cials in the Na­tional Pros­e­cut­ing Author­ity, in­clud­ing its deputy na­tional direc­tor, Nom­c­gobo Jiba. In 2012 Md­luli wrote to Pres­i­dent Zuma, promis­ing to help him in his bid to be re-elected ANC leader at the party’s Man­gaung con­fer­ence. But he has de­nied abus­ing the crime in­tel­li­gence unit for po­lit­i­cal pur­poses.

Md­luli re­mains on the SAPS pay­roll, even though other se­nior po­lice of­fi­cers, who have been suspended for var­i­ous vi­o­la­tions, have been cut off fi­nan­cially.

They in­clude Md­luli’s suc­ces­sor, Ma­jor Gen­eral Chris Ng­cobo, who was suspended in Oc­to­ber last year.

A month later, an in­ter­nal dis­ci­plinary hear­ing found he had “con­sis­tently lied about hav­ing a ma­tric cer­tifi­cate”.

Ng­cobo told his dis­ci­plinary in­quiry that as a for­mer MK com­bat­ant, a ma­tric cer­tifi­cate was not a re­quire­ment for him to join the po­lice ser­vice. He was found guilty, but has yet to be for­mally dis­missed.

Two se­nior po­lice sources have al­leged that Md­luli is be­ing pro­tected by na­tional po­lice com­mis­sioner Riah Phiyega, who has failed to in­sti­tute dis­ci­plinary pro­ceed­ings against him since he was suspended in 2012 de­spite rec­om­men­da­tions from the SAPS in­ter­nal legal di­vi­sion that she should take ac­tion.

“Phiyega does not want to in­sti­tute a dis­ci­plinary in­quiry against Md­luli, de­spite be­ing ad­vised to do so. She wants Md­luli to reach the age of 60 and to be kicked out of the pay­roll by the po­lice ser­vice’s Per­sal sys­tem,” said a se­nior po­lice of­fi­cer.

The salary sys­tem, used by many gov­ern­ment de­part­ments, au­to­mat­i­cally re­moves an em­ployee from the pay­roll once the per­son reaches re­tire­ment age.

Md­luli, who turned 57 last month, earns a salary of at least R1 398 771 a year. This ex­cludes an­nual in­creases based on the years of ser­vice.

As to why Md­luli has yet to face any in­ter­nal dis­ci­plinary pro­ceed­ings, Mak­gale said there had been “legal chal­lenges” in that re­gard, but would not elab­o­rate on them.

This week, suspended Gaut­eng Hawks boss Ma­jor Gen­eral Shadrack Sibiya told his dis­ci­plinary in­quiry that Md­luli’s sub­or­di­nates at the crime in­tel­li­gence unit had falsely im­pli­cated him in the il­le­gal ren­di­tion of five Zim­bab­weans. He said this hap­pened in 2010, shortly af­ter he ob­tained a war­rant to ar­rest Md­luli for Ramogibe’s mur­der.

On Fri­day, Sibiya’s lawyer, Paul Kennedy, told the hear­ing Md­luli had coached three of his crime in­tel­li­gence of­fi­cers to make state­ments im­pli­cat­ing his client in the ren­di­tions de­spite cell­phone lo­ca­tion ev­i­dence prov­ing he was not at the scene when the Zim­bab­weans were ar­rested. The three of­fi­cers have de­nied Sibiya’s claims de­spite giv­ing con­tra­dict­ing ac­counts on what hap­pened dur­ing the ren­di­tions.

For­mer Hawks head Anwa Dra­mat was suspended late last year by po­lice min­is­ter Nathi Nh­leko for his al­leged role in the ren­di­tions. He later re­signed.

Mak­gale said Ng­cobo’s salary was “stopped in line with our in­ter­nal dis­ci­plinary pro­cesses”. How­ever, he did not re­spond to ques­tions on why Md­luli con­tin­ued to re­ceive his salary for al­most three years while on sus­pen­sion with no dis­ci­plinary charges brought against him, and de­spite fac­ing se­ri­ous crim­i­nal charges.

“We have ex­plained mat­ters re­lat­ing to Lieu­tenant Gen­eral Md­luli’s dis­ci­plinary mat­ter. There is noth­ing new to add. Md­luli is on sus­pen­sion with full pay,” he said.

Mak­gale did not re­spond to al­le­ga­tions that Phiyega was pro­tect­ing Md­luli.

Md­luli’s lawyer, Ike Mot­loung, said: “My client has not been dis­missed. He is still in the em­ploy of the SAPS. I am not aware that my client still has a body­guard.”

d’oes’ Phiyega not want to in­sti­tute a dis­ci­plinary in­quiry against Md­luli, de­spite be­ing ad­vised to do so. She wants Md­luli to reach the age of 60 and be kicked out of the pay­roll by the po­lice ser­vice’s Per­sal sys­tem

PHOTO: COR­NEL VAN HEER­DEN

ALL SMILES Richard Md­luli

leaves the Palm Ridge Mag­is­trates’ Court on charges of kid­nap­ping, as­sault and

in­tim­i­da­tion stem­ming from the mur­der of his

for­mer lover’s boyfriend, Oupa

Ramogibe

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