JOHANNESBURG – South African police boss Robert McBride is in the firing line and could soon join Hawks bosses Anwa Dramat and Shadrack Sibiya on suspension in the wake of the illegal rendition of five Zimbabweans.

Police minister Nathi Nhleko has accused McBride, who is the head of the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid), of deliberately changing the findings of a report into the roles Dramat and Sibiya played in the renditions.

Nhleko has also accused McBride of illegally obtaining an “information storage device” from Sibiya’s office without his permission or that of national police commissioner-General Riah Phiyega.

Two senior sources – one within Ipid and a senior police officer – told City Press that talk of McBride’s suspension began last week.
It is believed he would be suspended “soon”.

The two said McBride and Nhleko’s fallout followed conflicting reports Ipid issued into the role of senior Hawks officers in the renditions.

In 2010, five men, including Witness Ndeya, Gordon Dube and Pritchard Tshuma, were illegally repatriated to Zimbabwe by the Hawks, but the proper extradition process was not followed.

Ndeya and Dube were allegedly murdered by Zimbabwean police and Tshuma went missing. Last week, in an apparent attempt to save his job, McBride wrote to the parliamentary portfolio committee on police to ask for an opportunity to explain why there were such glaring differences between the two reports.

– City Press