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Suspended head of Crime Intelligence Richard Mdluli will know his fate on Monday when labour court Judge Andre van Niekerk is to pronounce on whether he should or shouldn’t be allowed to go back to work.
Mdluli has taken the SAPS to the Labour Court to have his suspension declared invalid and for him to be allowed to return to work immediately.
This week Mdluli’s lawyer Graham Moshoana said his client was not personally served with notice of intention to suspend on May 15, the date in which acting head of crime intelligence Fannie Masemola alleges he had a two-hour meeting with Mdluli.
However SAPS lawyer William Mokhari disputed this and said Mdluli’s “bare denial was unacceptable”.
Moshoana added that Masemola’s testimony that Mdluli did not sign the notice of service because he wanted to consult his lawyer first could have been fabricated to prevent giving Mdluli a chance to represent himself before his suspension.
Mokhari said: “The applicant’s version is so far-fetched. Why would Masemola not give him the notice during the two-hour meeting, during which the issue of the notice should have come up?”
Moshoana said there was no denial that the meeting took place between Mdluli and Masemola, but disputed that his client had been personally served with the notice.
Masemola said in court papers that he followed up with Mdluli on May 16 with a phone call and an SMS, both of which were allegedly ignored.
Mokhari asked that the case be referred to the CCMA or bargaining council because the suspension was not an unfair labour practice.
Mdluli had earlier managed to have the suspension lifted by a Labour Court judge – but that turned out to be short-lived after the police challenged it.
Mdluli has been interdicted from performing any police duties after a court challenge by Freedom Under Law, a civil society group.
He is barred from entering any SAPS building and was also instructed to return keys, state vehicles, laptops, a state-issued cellphone and all other police belongings.
Mdluli was suspended last month for his alleged involvement in the kidnapping and murder of his ex-lover’s husband, Oupa Ramogibe.