McBride’s beef goes back to when he was suspended shortly after taking office in 2014.

Date: 20 Feb 2019

McBride’s beef goes back to when he was suspended shortly after taking office in 2014.

McBride’s beef goes back to when he was suspended shortly after taking office in 2014. independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) director Robert McBride’s fight for survival against Police Minister Bheki Cele is set to become all-out war when he eventually testifies at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry into State Capture.

McBride pulled out of testifying at the inquiry after news broke Cele would not be renewing McBride’s contract for a second term, leaving many wondering why this was so, and it is understood McBride’s statement is likely to contain damning evidence-based allegations.

While McBride was fighting Cele in court for his survival as Ipid head, it was revealed by News24 that Nafiz Modack, a suspect in an Ipid investigation, apparently alleged McBride was bribed by cigarette manufacturer Adriano Mazzotti to get information on Modack.

This was vehemently denied by both Modack and Mazzotti – who faced problems of his own yesterday when Sars swooped on his Hyde Park complex in pursuit of movable property to settle a tax bill of nearly R34 million.

This is important because it is believed Cele had approached police portfolio committee (PPC) member Sibonakaliso Mhlongo over the Modack-Mazotti issue and allegedly told him McBride had “sold state secrets to criminals”.

It is the PPC that must decide on McBride’s future, according to a court ruling.

Neither Cele nor Mhlongo responded to a request for clarification, and PPC chairman Francois Beukman said the committee’s aim was “to ensure that the process is procedurally and substantially fair and all parties adhere to the timelines”.

“We are not in position to comment on discussions between MPs in the parliamentary precinct that we are not privy to,” Beukman said.

McBride’s beef goes back to when he was suspended shortly after taking office in 2014 over “two contradicting reports” in the Zimbabwe rendition case when Hawks boss Anwa Dramat was hounded out of the police, making space for the now disgraced Berning Ntlemeza.

It is likely that then police minister Nkosinathi “Firepool” Nhleko’s name will come up before the commission in this regard.

Then there was the role played by Ipid’s Free State provincial head Israel Kgamanyane, and the Werksmans report into McBride and two other investigators – which Werksmans would not defend in court.

Kgamanyane went to parliament during McBride’s suspension, saying Ipid had performed better without McBride or several transferred investigators present, and it is likely McBride will challenge this.

Upon McBride’s return, Kgamanyane was controversially transferred from Ipid by Ntlemeza to the Hawks.

Claims of Ipid being infiltrated by Crime Intelligence are also likely to be made against Tlou Kgomo and another by McBride.

The two are alleged to have approached Ipid investigators with brigadier positions in hand to induce them to make false statements to implicate Ipid managers in wrongdoing. It is believed McBride may have a recording of this.

McBride and two investigators were subsequently investigated by the Hawks Crimes Against the State Unit for fraud and defeating the ends of justice – which drew a blank.

The same unit investigated cases against Minister Pravin Gordhan and the so-called Sars rogue unit.

It is also possible McBride will link disgraced former Sars commissioner Tom Moyane and the Hawks with the bizarre incident involving Sars legal adviser Vlok Symington, who was prevented by a Hawks investigator and Moyane’s bodyguard from leaving a boardroom until he handed back a document, at the instruction of Moyane.

– amandaw@citizen.co.za