Bheki Cele’s appointment is a sham – Zakhele Mbhele

DA MP says minister's chequered past renders him unfit to head up fight against crime

Minister Bheki Cele’s appointment is a sham

27 February 2018

The DA is disappointed by the entirely irrational appointment of Bheki Cele as Police Minister. His tenure as National Police Commissioner was nothing short of shambolic and all indications are that his tenure as Minister will be more of the same.

It is a shame that such an irresponsible figure, who famously and recklessly instructed the police to be trigger-happy and “Shoot to Kill” has now been put in charge of ensuring the SAPS is a responsive and professional police service.

For years, the DA has highlighted how vital good SAPS leadership is but Minister Cele’s blemished track record of inflammatory statements and allegations of corruption shows how detached the ANC government is from our people’s plight.

Minister Cele’s chequered past quite evidently renders him unfit to head up the fight against the unacceptably high levels of crime in South Africa.

In 2012, a three-person panel unanimously recommended that he should be fired as National Police Commissioner for his role in the awarding of R1.7-billion lease agreements for police accommodation.

Although evidence fell short of positively proving corruption, the panel ruled that Cele was dishonest about his relationship with businessman Roux Shabangu and that he acted with a clear undeclared conflict of interest.

Minister Cele was also supporter of former President Jacob Zuma during his corruption trial about the spy tapes which was later dropped. Cele only became anti-Zuma following his sacking as National Police Commissioner.

This conduct demonstrates characteristics of an individual who cannot be trusted to serve the people of our country.

South Africans deserve SAPS leadership which will put their safety first above their own interests. With Minister Cele at the helm, the shambolic state of the SAPS will only continue to deteriorate and the ultimate victims will be the hundreds of thousands of South Africans, including SAPS members, who will fall victim to crime.

Issued by Zakhele MbheleDA Shadow Minister of Police, 27 February 2018