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Mbalula: I would love to issue a warrant of arrest

Politics

Pretoria – Police Minister Fikile Mbalula said there may be a possibility that a warrant of arrest will have to be issued to recoup Hawks possessions that Berning Ntlemeza might still have and for unlawfully entering the offices.

Mbalula was addressing the media after reports emerged on Monday morning that Ntlemeza had sneaked back into the elite police unit's head offices in Pretoria.

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Picture: Jonisayi W Maromo/ANA

Ntlemeza reportedly attended a management meeting on Monday then ordered someone to give him a car and a cellphone.

Ntlemeza has created a stand-off with Mbalulala over his refusal to quit his job despite the minister ordering him to respect the decision of the court.

Earlier this month Mbalula said he had instructed acting national police commissioner Johannes Phahlane to recoup all state assets from Ntlemeza.

On Monday Mbalula said it was unlawful for Ntlemeza to return to work. "Ntlemeza is not defying me. Me and him can box in the street. This is not about me and him.

"Ntlemeza is playing politics. Even his lawyer is playing politics."

Mbalula said Ntlemeza was not suspended he was "out of duty".

"How was Ntlemeza allowed to enter this place? He is not a journalist. He has no authority to command anyone," said Mbalula.

The minister repeated his previous comments that he would not waste money on frivolous court cases that he stands no chance of winning.

Ntlemeza's appointment was nullified by the High Court in Pretoria after the court ruled that its earlier finding that Ntlemeza was not a fit and proper person to lead the Hawks should come into immediate effect even though he has appealed the ruling.

Subsequently, Mbalula also withdrew the appeal lodged at the Supreme Court of Appeal against the finding that Ntlemeza's appointment was "irrational and unlawful".

Ntlemeza was appointed permanently to the position by former Police Minister Nathi Nhleko in September 2015, despite Judge Elias Matojane having found that the general "lacks integrity and honour" and had lied under oath.

Subsequently, the FUL and Helen Suzman Foundation brought arguments before the court saying Ntlemeza was not fit and proper to hold office – the court agreed with them.

Last month the court ruled that Ntlemeza lacks the requisite honesty, integrity and conscientiousness to occupy any public office, and declared his appointment invalid and unlawful. The then police minister Nhleko appealed the ruling.

IOL and Politics and Development Hub

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