Row over po­lice van

A po­lice of­fi­cer al­legedly us­ing the state ve­hi­cle to at­tend church ev­ery Sun­day in Phola Park

The New Age (Western Cape) - - Mpumalanga News - FRANCE NYAKA fran­cen@the­newage.co.za

IF YOU were not aware you would think the po­lice van parked out­side a shack in a bushy area had re­sponded to a se­ri­ous crime.

The truth, how­ever, is that the shack where a church ser­vice is be­ing held ev­ery Sun­day and the po­lice of­fi­cer driv­ing the ve­hi­cle, is among the con­gre­gants.The state ve­hi­cle (JJV 007 MP) was spot­ted at the church on the Moloto Road in Phola Park near KwaMh­langa on Sun­day.

Con­cerned res­i­dents who wanted to re­main anony­mous said the ve­hi­cle was also used to trans­port con­gre­gants to and from the church.

“We need to find out from the po­lice au­thor­i­ties about the mis­use of the ve­hi­cle which is meant to serve the com­mu­nity in the fight against crime and not for church re­lated matters,” the res­i­dents said.

“It is ques­tion­able see­ing a po­lice ve­hi­cle parked at the church while we are com­plain­ing about a short­age of po­lice vehicles. We have had enough with such po­lice of­fi­cers abus­ing state re­sources.”

Po­lice com­mis­sioner Lt-Gen Mondli Zuma’s spokesper­son Brig Leonard Hlathi said they were shocked by the al­le­ga­tion be­cause it was un­law­ful for po­lice of­fi­cers to utilise state vehicles to at­tend church ser­vices and other pri­vate func­tions.

Hlathi said the of­fi­cers were fully aware of the in­struc­tions be­cause there had been oth­ers who were pre­vi­ously pun­ished for such un­law­ful ac­tiv­i­ties.

“They have no author­ity to use state vehicles when at­tend­ing church ser­vices or ren­der­ing any pri­vate busi­ness,” Hlathi said. “Such al­le­ga­tions will be in­ves­ti­gated. The in­volved of­fi­cer will have to tell us why the ve­hi­cle was parked on the church premises.

“We will leave no stone un­turned on po­lice of­fi­cers who con­tinue to abuse state re­sources,” Hlathi said.

PIC­TURE: FRANCE NYAKA

THE OTHER PO­LICE SER­VICE: Res­i­dents have en­quired about a po­lice ve­hi­cle used by an of­fi­cer to at­tend church ser­vices in Phola Park.

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