Joe Public says no to Mdluli saga
A group of 15 ordinary South African youths have added their voices to throngs of concerned citizens calling for decisive action against embattled spy boss Lieutenant-General Richard Mdluli.
Youth activist Lukhona Mnguni, on behalf of the #SuspendMdluli Movement, submitted a petition to Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa and police portfolio committee chairman Sindi Chikunga on Friday, stating that their lacklustre approach to dealing with the Mdluli saga was leading to the perception that the country was turning into a "gangster state".
"The minute a nation calls itself a 'gangster state', because it believes that the action of the leaders who should be protecting it is thuggish, then we [should] know the SAPS establishment has lost credibility."
The group said it has no resources to join any court litigation against Mdluli - similar to last week's court application by Freedom Under Law supported by activist Mamphela Ramphele - but hoped that Mthethwa will take their petition seriously.
"We believe that no citizen should feel unsafe (fearing the actions of a leader of police) in their country and it is the duty of the leadership of the South African Police Service to protect us and keep us safe at all times."
The group said the continued stay of Mdluli in the top echelons of the police, further "contaminates an already struggling image of the police establishment".
This petition follows reports that acting national police commissioner Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi last week sent Mdluli a notice of intention to suspend him.
It came in the same week that Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale submitted an official request for the public protector to investigate Mdluli's alleged abuse of state resources in what appears to be an internal ANC battle.
Mnguni said Mdluli's admission that he compiled an intelligence report on the ANC's leadership battles "poses a security risk and threatens future social stability".
Said the group: "We demand a SAPS leadership that is not seen to be flirting with the criminal offences they seek to fight.
"The suspension of Mdluli will also set us on a journey in which the public will start to regain its trust in the SAPS leadership."
Mthethwa's spokesman, Zweli Mnisi, said yesterday the minister had already set up a task team to investigate allegations made by Mdluli in a letter.
"Mthethwa took such action because Mdluli made allegations of political meddling in police functions," he said.