Cape Town -
The Western Cape parliament’s standing committee on community safety has criticised provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Arno Lamoer for his silence on corruption allegations levelled against him, saying public confidence in the police is already at an all-time low.
Committee chairman Mark Wiley urged Lamoer to take the public into his confidence concerning the serious allegations against him.
“I note the very conspicuous silence from the police commissioner, Lieutenant-General Lamoer, regarding various allegations of corruption being levelled against him,” Wiley said.
“These allegations are currently being investigated by the Hawks. Public confidence in the South African Police Service is already at an all-time low.”
His comments followed recent media reports that Lamoer allegedly had a corrupt relationship with Cape Town businessman Mohamed Salim Dawjee, who openly admitted he had had a close relationship with Lamoer for 20 years but denied any wrongdoing.
Lamoer is being investigated over alleged payouts from Dawjee.
The Hawks have been investigating the pair for about four months – a probe that has included phone taps.
Wiley said the fact that Lamoer was yet to speak in his own defence increased the feeling of unease surrounding the matter.
“This is amplified by the media reports that the national police commissioner, Riah Phiyega, illegally informed Lamoer of the investigation against him by the Hawks.”
Meanwhile, the chairman of the Western Cape Development Committee of the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster, advocate Hishaam Mohamed, said crime-fighting structures in the province were not affected by the allegations.
“We have full confidence in the police commissioner, who for more than 30 years continues to serve our cluster with distinction, and have no reason to doubt his integrity as our colleague.”
Mohamed said their structures were led by experienced managers who daily continued to strive to ensure that all people in the province were safe and felt safe.
He added that the cluster’s programmes and operations were on track to ensure the safety of the public during the festive season.