Lieutenant-General Godfrey Lebeya, head of the Hawks. Picture: Motshwari Mofokeng

CAPE TOWN - Parliament's police portfolio committee has welcomed the announcement by Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI, or Hawks) head Lt-Gen Godfrey Lebeya of the appointment of a team to fast-track investigations regarding allegations of state capture.

The pro-active steps taken by Lebeya were necessary and appropriate, committee chairman Francois Beukman said on Sunday.

"The DPCI should be at the forefront in dealing with organised commercial crime and serious economic crime investigations. Key in this endeavour would be to strengthen the commercial crime division of the DPCI in terms of leadership and critical skills," he said.

The Hawks needed the necessary resources and expertise to deal effectively with current high profile commercial crime and corruption cases. 

The committee had also noted the announcement by Lebeya on the suspension of Maj-Gen Zinhle Mnonopi after revelations at the Zondo Commission of inquiry into state capture. 

The committee would await the outcome of the relevant processes.

Beukman also highlighted the important role of the office of the DPCI judge to deal with serious complaints against members of the Hawks, saying members of the public who had their rights negatively affected by illegal conduct or improper investigation by members of the Hawks should, without delay, lodge a complaint with the judge.

"The office of the DPCI judge is a crucial oversight institution in the criminal justice system,” he said.

The committee would this week invite Judge Frans Kgomo to parliament to brief the committee on the current status of complaints received by his office and the processing of investigations.

African News Agency (ANA)