A board of inquiry investigating allegations of misconduct against suspended national police commissioner Riah Phiyega has become officially “operational”, the Presidency said on Monday.
President Jacob Zuma suspended Phiyega on October 14 over allegations of misconduct.
According to the Presidency, the board of inquiry will focus on a number of aspects relating to whether Phiyega and other top-tier police leadership misled the Farlam Commission which investigated the deaths of 44 people, 41 of whom were miners, in Marikana in 2012.
The Presidency said the inquiry would investigate the report prepared by Phiyega for Zuma on August 16 2012 and the media statement subsequently issued on August 17 2012 to see if they were deliberately amended to conceal the fact that there were two shooting incidents at different scenes.
The board would also assess whether the overall testimony by Phiyega at the Marikana Commission was in keeping with “the office which she holds and the discharge of her duties commensurate therewith”.
Members of the board include chairperson Judge Neels Claassen, advocate Bernard Khuzwayo and advocate Anusha Rawjee. The board has appointed advocate Liza Tsatsi as secretary.
A ministerial reference group, which has been dealing with a host of concerns facing the police services, recently laid the blame for most of the challenges solely at Phiyega’s door.
She has been accused of perjury, fraud, misconduct and wasteful expenditure by the reference group, formed in September last year to look at some of the challenges facing the police.
From demotions and wasteful expenditure to individual grievances, Police Minister Nathi Nhleko recently told Parliament that the reference group had found Phiyega had committed criminal and procedural offences in her role as national commissioner.