Hawks spokesman McIntosh Polela has been suspended three weeks after making a controversial reference to prison rape on Twitter, police said. Screenshot: Twitter

Johannesburg - A tweet by Hawks spokesman Colonel McIntosh Polela about Vaseline and murder-convicted kwaito star Molemo “Jub Jub” Maarohanye, made news headlines on Wednesday morning.

“JubJub spending 1st nite in prison. Bail has been denied after being found guilty of murder, attempted murder & racing while high,” Polela first tweeted on Tuesday, shortly after judgment was handed down in the Protea Magistrate's Court.

A second tweet followed a while later: “I trust that JubJub's supporters gave him a jar of Vaseline to take to prison.”

Another Twitter user asked him: “Wha'ts Vaseline for in Prison?,” to which Polela replied, “Polishing specialized prison shoes!”

Several users commented on his tweet, with one user saying:

“Really? Rape jokes from the police spokesman?”, and another said, “Coming from a officer of the court that is low! Scrapping (sic) at the bottom of the barrel for comments now are we?”.

The tweet from Tuesday - after Maarohanye and his co-accused Themba Tshabalala were found guilty of murder - was still on his profile on Wednesday morning.

Beeld newspaper said it contacted him about what he had written, but he declined to comment.

On Twitter, Polela describes himself as an award-winning spokesman, best-selling author, French student, hunter and rifles fanatic, and literature nerd.

It also says, “My tweets are 4 my tweeps. No publishing”.

Maarohanye and Tshabalala were found guilty on four counts of murder, two of attempted murder, using drugs, racing on a public road, and driving under the influence of drugs.

Maarohanye and Tshabalala were drag-racing in Protea North on March 8, 2010 when they crashed into a group of school boys. - Sapa