There was “no need for alarm” regarding former crime intelligence boss Lieutenant-General Richard Mdluli, President Jacob Zuma said in Bloemfontein on Thursday.
There was “concern” over recent negative publicity related to crime intelligence, despite the “sterling” work police continued to perform, he said at a business briefing.
Zuma did not mention Mdluli by name, but referred to “the matter affecting the police crime intelligence unit”.
“Our country has enough instruments to ensure that there is no abuse of power or resources to further any objectives, especially by our intelligence and security services.”
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa had established a task team to look into the matter, and a report was expected within a month.
“In addition, the inspector general of intelligence has the legal mandate of oversight with regard to the financial management of crime intelligence.”
The inspector general, Faith Radebe, was also empowered to look into any other matters that could be brought to light by the investigation, Zuma said.
Last week, the presidency said reports that Zuma interfered in Mdluli's investigation, and that he attended a party to celebrate Mdluli's acquittal, were “complete fabrications”.
“We wish to urge the media to be cautious and stick to the facts when reporting such matters,” it said.
Last Wednesday, Mthethwa announced Mdluli would be move from head of crime intelligence to another position within the police.
Non-profit organisation Freedom Under Law applied for an urgent interdict on Tuesday preventing Mdluli from serving in the police. It also wanted to interdict Mthethwa from moving Mdluli to a new position before a review of his reinstatement.
Last year, Mdluli faced fraud and corruption charges relating to the alleged misuse of a crime intelligence fund, the purchase of luxury vehicles and the hiring of family members. He also faced a murder charge following the murder of a former lover's boyfriend, Oupa Ramogibe.
Both sets of charges were withdrawn and Mdluli was reinstated as head of crime intelligence. The murder investigation became an inquest. - Sapa