Hawks engaged on consequence management in DMV - Committee

Number of cases under investigation doesn’t correspond with what dept presented

Defence Committee engages Hawks on consequence management in defence environment

1 June 2023

The Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans has welcomed a briefing from the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (commonly known as the Hawks) on the status of cases referred to it by the departments of Defence and of Military Veterans. This forms part of the committee’s broader efforts to address low levels of consequence management across the departments under its oversight.

Briefing the committee, the Hawks said that it had prioritised cases received from the Department of Defence, such as those concerning theft, fraud and corruption, manipulation of tender processes and kick-backs to officials. The Hawks mentioned that it does not have endless resources, but it has nevertheless tried to pursue all investigations, despite hurdles such as the accused changing their legal representatives, which causes delays.

Representatives from the Inspector-General told the committee that, following its investigations against members of the Department of Defence, it often refers cases to the Hawks, the South African Police Service (SAPS) and the specialised Commercial Crimes Unit, especially cases involving civilians.

The committee was disappointed to see that the number of cases under investigation by the Hawks, which was mentioned in the presentation, did not correspond with what the Department of Defence presented previously to the committee. The committee will follow up with the department on this.

The Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans, Mr Cyril Xaba, said that the committee noted the lack of capacity at the military police to conduct efficient investigations into all cases of fraud and corruption, a situation that has led the Auditor-General to complain about inadequate consequence management.

The committee welcomed the cooperation between the Hawks and the Department of Defence and called on the Hawks to fast-track investigations and finalise those that have been in the pipeline for some time as a means to boost consequence management in both departments.

Issued by Jabulani Majozi, Media Officer, Parliamentary Communication Services, 1 June 2023