Stop ha­rass­ing whis­tle-blow­ers

CityPress - - Voices -

This week, three em­ploy­ees of the In­de­pen­dent Po­lice In­ves­tiga­tive Di­rec­torate (Ipid) had to re­sort to the courts to stop the hi­er­ar­chy in the in­sti­tu­tion from sum­mar­ily trans­fer­ring them to far­away posts in other prov­inces with­out their con­sent.

The three of­fi­cials are be­ing in­ves­ti­gated in con­nec­tion with leak­ing in­for­ma­tion to City Press about the ap­point­ment of Deputy Po­lice Min­is­ter Mag­gie So­tyu’s daugh­ter, Boniwe, to the po­si­tion of deputy in­ves­ti­ga­tions di­rec­tor in the Free State.

Boniwe So­tyu bagged the job ahead of more ex­pe­ri­enced can­di­dates and did not have the re­quired qual­i­fi­ca­tions or ex­pe­ri­ence re­quired for the post.

In Par­lia­ment, head of se­cu­rity Zelda Holtz­man was frog­marched out of her of­fices by ju­nior staff this week when she re­turned to her of­fice af­ter a 30-day pe­riod of sus­pen­sion had ex­pired with­out any ac­tion be­ing taken against her.

Holtz­man was sus­pected of be­ing be­hind in­for­ma­tion that Par­lia­ment sec­re­tary Gengezi Mgid­lana was al­legedly abus­ing VIP blue lights for per­sonal use.

These two sep­a­rate cases in­volve the pow­ers that be act­ing against their ju­niors be­cause they ei­ther ex­posed wrong­do­ing or are sus­pected of leak­ing in­for­ma­tion to the media about ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties in their in­sti­tu­tions.

In­stead of act­ing on the im­proper con­duct of those ex­posed by media cov­er­age, the in­sti­tu­tions have gone on a witch-hunt against sus­pected whis­tle-blow­ers.

We urge these in­sti­tu­tions to shift their mind­sets and, for once, em­brace trans­parency and the proper use of and ac­count­ing for state re­sources.

The truth will come out sooner or later. The energy that is be­ing ex­pended on the in­tim­i­da­tion of sus­pected whis­tle-blow­ers is bet­ter spent in en­sur­ing clean gov­er­nance.

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