National 6.9.2016 04:55 pm

MPs to decide on disciplinary action against McBride

FILE PICTURE: Robert McBride. Picture: Michel Bega

FILE PICTURE: Robert McBride. Picture: Michel Bega

Parliament is expected to remedy the Ipid Act and decide whether or not to restart disciplinary action against the suspended police watchdog’s head.

Parliament’s portfolio committee on police on Tuesday said it would take its cue from the National Assembly before it decides whether it will restart disciplinary proceedings against Robert McBride, suspended head of the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid).

Responding to the Constitutional Court ruling earlier on Tuesday morning, which declared Police Minister Nathi Nhleko’s decision to suspend McBride as invalid, committee chairperson Francois Beukman said the matter would eventually end up with MPs to rectify.

“Parliament, and specifically the portfolio committee on police, will have to deal with the Ipid Act and regulations’ rectification to ensure it complies with the Constitution,” said Beukman.

“We have noted the Constitutional Court’s decision and order on the importance of the Ipid’s independence. We are in concurrence.”

Beukman said a decision on whether to institute a new disciplinary process against McBride would be made after referral from the National Assembly.

“We also noted the decision that the disciplinary process must be restarted with the necessary parliamentary oversight. Since the matter will be referred by the minister of police and the National Assembly to Parliament, we will await the outcome of those relevant processes.”

The Constitutional Court ordered that McBride’s suspension remains in place for 30 days while Parliament decides whether or not they want to discipline McBride.

Nhleko suspended McBride as head of Ipid early last year and preferred a charge of defeating the ends of justice against him.

McBride was accused of tampering with an Ipid report into whether the former head of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (the Hawks), Lieutenant-General Anwa Dramat, was involved in the illegal rendition of Zimbabweans accused of murder in their country.

In December, the High Court in Pretoria ruled that sections of the Ipid Act that had allowed Nhleko to suspend McBride unilaterally were unconstitutional. The court suspended its order pending the Constitutional Court’s ruling on the matter.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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