Saturday, 5 March 2011


By Globe Reporter
INSTITUTE for Democracy in South Africa (IDASA) has condemned the South African police crime intelligence unit’s alleged raid on the Office of the Public Prosecutor.
In a statement, Idasa noted with extreme concern what appears to have been an unauthorised raid by the police crime intelligence unit on the Office of the Public Protector.
“The implications and seriousness of this apparently unauthorised action cannot be ignored or under-estimated. The Constitution places an obligation on all state departments and officials to treat the independent Chapter Nine institutions, such as the Office of the Public Protector, with special respect, “ read the statement in part “If the ‘raid’ was not approved by the Police Commissioner, General Bheki Cele, as he has stated, who did approve it, or did the officers concerned act outside the scope and course of their standing instructions? At the very least, any request for documents from the Office of the Public Protector should be dealt with by means of an authorised written request by an appropriately senior official. Only one other form of written authorisation is recognised by the law: a warrant issued by a judge or magistrate. There has been no indication that any judicial officer granted this permission.”
IDASA observed that the reported raid confirmed the widespread perception that the incident is somehow linked to the Public Protector’s recent report,
“Against the Rules”, regarding the lease for a new police headquarters.
IDASA  asked Commissioner Cele to take immediate action against those who carried the raid for them to account for their action if South Africans were to be reassured that the police know that they may perform their duties only as authorised by the Constitution.
IDASA further asked Minister of Police Nathi Mthethwa and President Jacob Zuma, as those politically accountable in this instance, to seek the appropriate answers from Commissioner Cele.

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