A POLICE sergeant based at Beitbridge Border Post has taken his boss, Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri and two other top officers to court over ‘unfair’ criminal abuse of office charges levelled against him.
BY SILAS NKALA
Sergeant Bongani Hlabangani filed an urgent High Court application against Chihuri, Senior Assistant Commissioner one M Tanyanywa and Chief Superintendent one T Nyamukoho seeking an interdict to stop the police from convening a disciplinary hearing against him.
Hlabangani, in his founding affidavit, accuses Chihuri, Tanyanywa and Nyamukoho of dragging him to a disciplinary hearing despite his acquittal at the Beitbridge Magistrates Court over the same charges.
This followed his arrest on April 18, last year at the border post on corruption charges. Hlabangani said despite his acquittal by the courts, the police force dragged him to a one-man disciplinary hearing on June 5, 2014. He was sentenced to 10 days in detention.
When he challenged the sentence, Chihuri allegedly dismissed the appeal.
Hlabangani said Chihuri later made him to sign a warning memorandum and instructed Tanyanywa and Nyamukoho to appoint a board of inquiry to convene a disciplinary hearing.
“If I was made to sign a memorandum of warning as per appeal outcome then a board of inquiry was not going to be convened against me as the memo stipulate that it cannot be convened against me for a particular time,” he said.
“I am aggrieved that despite the fact that I am a first offender and I was not charged with an offence involving dishonesty the respondents have gone ahead to convene a board of inquiry against me. This decision is unlawful as it is not provided for in the Police Act and contradicts the appeal judgment given by the 1st respondent (Chihuri).”
Hlabangani is seeking an interdict to stop the board of inquiry from convening, fearing an unfair hearing.
“I submit that I will suffer irreparable harm should the board be allowed to sit,” he submitted. Chihuri and his juniors are yet to respond to the application.