The national commissioner of the South African Police Service (SAPS), General Khehla Sitole has suspended his deputy, Lieutenant-General Bonang Mgwenya “following damning allegations” levelled against her.
On Monday, Mgwenya was arrested by the Investigating Directorate and later appeared in the Palm Ridge Magistrate’s Court in Johannesburg where she was granted R20 000 bail after being charged with corruption, fraud, and money laundering.
The charges against her are in connection with a dodgy R86 million contract to kit cop cars out with blue lights, sirens and radios that she allegedly helped push through back in 2016. She is said to have scored almost R500 000 worth of kickbacks in exchange.
Police spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo said after Sitole received a report on the charges against Mgwenya, due processes were followed resulting in her immediate suspension on Wednesday “pending a departmental investigation”.
Mgwenya is due back in court next month when she will be joined by more than a dozen more accused in the case – among them former acting police commissioner Khomotso Phahlane.
Naidoo said in a separate matter, Sitole “moments ago dismissed” a lieutenant-general for their alleged involvement in corruption dating back to 2015.
“Details of this case will be provided at a later stage,” he said.
Naidoo said the dismissal of the top cop highlighted Sitole’s determination and resolve to root out corruption from with the SAPS.
“The SAPS is suffering a severe wound in the form of corruption. But as we continue to clean our ranks, the scar of it will remind us that we should never suffer such a wound again,” said Sitole.
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