South African Police Car Masoyi
SAPS / Image via Wikimedia Commons

The newly-appointed acting executive director of South Africa’s Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) said Wednesday the agency will investigate police wrongdoing independently without fear or favor.

Victor Senna made the pledge as he delivered his maiden address to Members of Parliament.

The IPID’s more than 200 investigators will, among others, investigate high-impact cases which include complaints relating to deaths in police custody, deaths as a result of police action, rape and corruption, Senna said.

Maintaining the IPID’s independence will remain a priority, Senna said, adding that the operational structure and independence of the IPID is strongly protected by the Constitution.

Senna was appointed by Police Minister Bheki Cele to replace Robert McBride who was denied a fresh mandate by Cele as IPID boss after McBride’s five-year contract expired at the end of February.

McBride’s departure has raised concern that the ongoing investigation into corrupt cops would hit snags.

But Senna said that despite the departure of McBride, it will be business as usual at the IPID as investigators will continue to tackle high-impact cases without fear or favor. He pledged that the IPID will continue implementing its mandate and that no cases will be abandoned as the result of a change in leadership.

The IPID is an agency of the South African government responsible for investigating complaints against the South African Police Service (SAPS) and municipal police services in relation to crimes allegedly committed by police officers, violations of SAPS policy, and dissatisfaction with the service provided by police. Enditem

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