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Durban - Robert McBride’s estranged father, Derrick, believes his son is the right man to head the police watchdog, the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid).
McBride is the favourite to take over as Ipid head after the majority of ANC MPs in the police committee portfolio voted for him on Wednesday.
McBride sr, 81, who has not spoken to his son for years, said he was “disturbed” by the doubt and reservations that opposition parties and political commentators had raised about the appointment.
“He (Robert) grew up here (Wentworth) in this criminal world. He is capable. Are you saying the ANC can’t appoint capable people? He’s never been corrupt with money and I haven’t spoken to him for years, and I won’t,” he said.
McBride said he met Robert’s wife last week for the first time at their Johannesburg home. Robert had to be away for the duration of the planned visit – such is the volatility of the relationship.
He was speaking to the Daily News at his Wentworth home.
“He (Robert) used to be abused by the apartheid police reservists in the 1980s. They used to pull out guns and assault him, but at the police station they would open charges against him,” he said.
He said his son would do a “good job” unless he “messes up” over something “stupid”.
The father laid into the ANC and its leaders and said it was nothing like the ANC of the 1950s. “I don’t respect the ANC’s attitude of caring for people, because they don’t. They are just greedy grabbers”
The IFP’s police spokesman, Velaphi Ndlovu, said: “We reject McBride's appointment because not only will public perception of the police be further tainted, but now McBride will be given the power to investigate the very people who investigated him for his drunken driving case.
“The police do not trust or respect him and because he will be the head of Ipid, the validity of the cases he investigates will be challenged,” he said.