Mountain Rise gets new cluster commander
IN a sudden move by police, former deputy cluster commander of uMgungundlovu South Brigadier Robert Mandla Gwala has taken over as the Mountain Rise cluster commander.
It seems that mystery surrounds the reasons for the hasty departure of MajorGeneral Bongi Sithole, the previous incumbent.
Police officers were left to speculate over her departure.
Several attempts to reach Sithole were unsuccessful yesterday.
Sithole started her career over 30 years ago in Umlazi, slowly climbing the ranks, moving between various specialised units.
In 2010, Sithole was made station commander at KwaDukuza and, most recently, was wearing two hats as the Pinetown station commander as well as the acting cluster commander for that area.
By Thursday afternoon, the news of Sithole’s exit was being discussed in whisBrigadier Robert Mandla Gwala is the new acting cluster commander of the Mountain Rise police station. PHOTO: FACEBOOK pers in police corridors with many wondering what the reason for her departure was.
On Thursday afternoon Gwala was announced as the acting Mountain Rise cluster commander.
However, police have remained tightlipped regarding the reasons surrounding Sithole’s departure.
Provincial police spokesperson Brigadier Jay Naicker said “unfortunately this is an internal matter between employer and employee and ... we cannot discuss these issues in the public domain”.
A phone call between Weekend Witness and the cluster office revealed that Sithole was not around yesterday.
Gwala was the station commander for Plessislaer before moving to the Pietermaritzburg cluster office as deputy cluster commander.
In 2016, Gwala came under fire for boasting his alleged affiliation to the ANC on Facebook, an act which contravenes the police’s code of conduct.
Safe City’s Lucas Holtzhausen said Gwala had climbed through the ranks as a police officer and had been very strict with cracking down on crime in the Plessislaer area. “Plessislaer and Mountain Rise have similar issues so I feel he is the right person for the job ...” he said.