Picture: Khanyisile Ngcobo

Johannesburg - Police Minister Fikile Mbalula on Tuesday vowed to correct misinformation being peddled alleging he had seized control of the crime intelligence unit and was interfering in the unit's operations.

Mbalula made these remarks at a media briefing held by the ministry to address recent reports on political interference by the minister in the unit.

According to an EWN report, Mbalula's involvement includes interfering in the strategic unit's operations as well as issuing instructions directly to the unit's divisional commissioner.

A photo has since been leaked showing the minister with several crime intelligence officers who have reportedly been assigned to work for him.

The images, published by News, have been blurred to protect the identities of the officers.

Mbalula talks about role of crime intelligence. Video: Khanyisile Ngcobo


Commenting on the matter, the minister denied executive overreach in operations at the the crime intelligence unit.

"There's no executive overreach, I'm a hands-on minister... I'm not sleeping on duty, I'm not idling."

"I've got weekly meetings with top management, which includes Lt-Gen  [Lesetja] Mothiba and the Secretariat."

Mbalula added that his focus was on fighting crime and not on "rogue" elements within the South African Police Service.

He added that his intervention was informed by issues raised by the Auditor-General, which he was tasked to resolve.

"The minister can give directives in the context of the Constitution... there is nothing untoward or illegal about this," he said.

He stressed the need to address the misinformation peddled by a few frustrated people "who are trying to get their way", saying if he did not rebutt this it would be construed as the truth.

Addressing his relationship with Mothiba, which has been described as tense in the media, Mbalula insisted he had a professional relationship with the acting national police commissioner.