FIN­GER­PRINTS SAGA:

TOP COP’S CON­TRACT RE­NEWED

Sunday Observer - - FRONT PAGE - STO­RIES BY THEMBEKA DLAMINI

While ju­nior cops im­pli­cated in the fin­ger­print scan­dal make court ap­pear­ances and are fur­ther de­tained for in­ter­fer­ing with wit­nesses, a Royal Swazi­land Po­lice (RSP) Higher Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mand (HEC) mem­ber who is al­legedly fin­gered in the de­ba­cle has had his con­tract re­newed.

This is ac­cord­ing to well-placed sources who con­firmed that the ex­ec­u­tive, whose name ap­pears in the docket con­tain­ing al­le­ga­tions about the role of se­nior po­lice of­fi­cers in the scan­dal that saw three of­fi­cers ar­rested while oth­ers were made state wit­nesses, has had his con­tract which was to ex­pire ex­tended.

Ef­forts to get the po­lice to com­ment about the is­sue proved fu­tile as Chief Po­lice In­for­ma­tion Of­fi­cer Khu­lani Mamba said ex­ec­u­tive’s con­tracts were above his of­fice and he re­ferred ques­tions to gov­ern­ment spokesper­son Percy Sime­lane. “Such mat­ters are the pre­rog­a­tive of the Prime Min­is­ter’s of­fice, so please get a com­ment from Sime­lane,” he said.

When Sime­lane was con­tacted, he

was asked to clar­ify on the cri­te­ria used by gov­ern­ment when re­new­ing ex­ec­u­tives’ con­tracts. He was fur­ther asked as to what was con­sid­ered when the HEC mem­ber’s con­tract was ex­tended whereas he was im­pli­cated in the fin­ger­print scan­dal.

“Con­sti­tu­tion­ally, 60 years marks the com­pul­sory re­tire­ment age for civil ser­vants. But if it pleases the Head of State that you may be given a con­tract to con­tinue serv­ing you stay on. Un­less oth­er­wise the cri­te­ria is out­stand­ing

de­liv­ery,” he wrote in re­sponse.

Fur­ther, he said, “With­out be­ing spe­cific to the of­fi­cer in ques­tion, the laws of the land dic­tate that a per­son is in­no­cent un­til he is found guilty by a court of law. Im­pli­ca­tion is not nec­es­sar­ily a con­vic­tion.”

Well-placed sources said there was dis­gruntle­ment within the ser­vice as the ex­pec­ta­tion was that the HEC mem­ber would not have his con­tract ex­tended as in­ves­ti­ga­tions into his role have been on­go­ing. There were even re­ports

that the mem­ber was deemed un-pros­e­cutable hence the con­tract re­newal.

How­ever, his pros­e­cutable sta­tus was scoffed at by the of­fice of the Di­rec­tor of Public Pros­e­cu­tion through Brian Ma­gag­ula this past week.

Ma­gag­ula was called af­ter the act­ing DPP Phila Dlamini was said to be in­dis­posed as he was not at work when sought for com­ment.

Ma­gag­ula said as far as he knew noth­ing had changed con­cern­ing the in­ves­ti­ga­tions into al­le­ga­tions con­cern­ing

the ex­ec­u­tive.

He how­ever re­lented that he had not gone through the docket and once he had with the act­ing DPP, then could the of­fice be in a po­si­tion to take a col­lec­tive de­ci­sion.

“I will hear from Dlamini as to when I can see the docket be­cause as far as I re­call, there were in­ves­ti­ga­tions on­go­ing. As far as I know, I don’t re­mem­ber charges be­ing with­drawn, un­less you have dif­fer­ent in­for­ma­tion,” he said. He promised to give de­tailed in­for­ma­tion, “I will talk to Dlamini and hear from him as to what hap­pens af­ter we look at the docket and then take the col­lec­tive de­ci­sion based on the con­tents of the docket.”

He promised to give proper re­sponse to the queries. “Right now, I am leav­ing for a meet­ing and go­ing to the of­fice to meet Dlamini and I will there­after give you a re­sponse,” he said, how­ever, the ques­tion­naire sent to him was not re­sponded to by the end of Fri­day de­spite as­sur­ances that the of­fice would.

How­ever, in Au­gust, the Times of Swazi­land re­ported that the of­fice of the DPP chose not to pros­e­cute de­spite be­ing fur­nished a dossier by the po­lice ser­vice con­tain­ing ev­i­dence of ex­ec­u­tives’ al­leged in­volve­ment as they wanted to fi­nalise the ju­nior cops cases

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Swaziland

© PressReader. All rights reserved.