Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko and Independent Police Investigating Directorate head Robert McBride. Pictures: Masi Losi and Phill Magakoe/Independent Media
Parliament - The strained relations between Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko and Independent Police Investigating Directorate boss Robert McBride were again laid bare as the police watchdog appeared before Parliament on Wednesday.

In a veiled attack on Nhleko, McBride revealed that former Ipid acting executive director Israel Kgamanyane was transferred to the Hawks without the police watchdog's approval. “There was a disciplinary case he was facing for fruitless and wasteful expenditure. There was also a criminal case, which he is still facing,” McBride said.

Ipid’s chief director for investigations and information management, Matthews Sisoko, said the criminal investigation was initially opened with SAPS when their former colleague was with Ipid.

Kgamanyane was transferred to the Hawks at a sensitive time. "The investigation is at advanced stage and it would be referred to the National Prosecuting Authority for a decision.”

McBride also told the parliamentary committee that upon his appointment at the Hawks, Ipid received letters from Kgamanyane demanding a bonus of more than R100 000. It was approved by Nhleko.

Kgamanyane, who held the Ipid reins while McBride was suspended by Nhleko, had the minister’s blessing, including his appointment to the Hawks, McBride told the committee.

“The question is whether the appointment to the Directorate for Priority Crimes Investigations should not seen as gratification to a relation, which is suspiciously a corrupt relationship.” McBride said the Constitutional Court had ruled there should be sufficient distance between the Hawks, Ipid and the minister.

Nhleko was not present at the meeting despite Ipid falling under his oversight. The DA’s Zakhele Mbhele said Nhleko accompanying Phahlane two weeks ago was show of support and solidarity.

“It is quite telling there is contrast; the minister is not being at this particular meeting to show he takes these high-profile cases seriously.”

Mbhele said it was clear McBride and Nhleko had a frosty relationship.

Political Bureau