Pretoria: Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa has decided to legally challenge Western Cape Premier Helen Zille’s establishment of a Commission of Inquiry to look into allegations of police inefficiency in Khayelitsha.
The minister wants the commission to be set aside while appropriate platforms are followed to address the challenges of crime in Khayelitsha, the Police Ministry said.
The legal team is currently finalising the papers which are expected to be filed before the end of the week, it added.
According to the Police Ministry, Mthethwa’s decision follows a protracted process initiated by him in the spirit of goodwill and inter-governmental cooperation, including one-on-one discussions with the premier.
During their meeting and in exchanges of correspondence, the minister outlined substantive reasons he believed the establishment of such a commission was a premature approach in addressing the challenges of crime in Khayelitsha.
“I have indicated during my engagements with Premier Zille, substantiated my reasons and proposed an approach around the challenges of crime in Khayelitsha. I have further emphatically stated that we do not question her powers to set up such a commission. However, we remain convinced that there were various avenues where the issue could have been raised, but never was,” the minister said.
The rationale behind setting up of such a commission, which at a strategic level only focused on SAPS and not the Western Cape Metro Police, was suspicious if not questionable, he added.
“Despite the engagements we held with the premier over the past weeks, it is evident that she is determined to continue with the commission … which leaves us with no option but to challenge the matter through the legal framework,” Mthethwa said.