The appointment of General Shadreck Sibiya as head of Group Forensic Investigation Services (GFIS) by the City of Joburg (COJ) has again come under the spotlight with Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane now saying she is taking the matter to the police.
Initially, when the public protector probed the matter she found that the COJ had acted above board when it recruited General Sibiya.
However, on Tuesday Mkhwebane said she now had new evidence, which had not been disclosed during the initial probe that pointed to a different outcome regarding the lawfulness of General Sibiya’s appointment.
“On 18 April 2022, I received a letter from the Acting City Manager of COJ: Mr. [Floyd] Brink in which specific information was brought to my attention for the first time,” revealed the public protector.
“Critical amongst the undisclosed information or documents was the Competency Assessment report, which found Mr. Sibiya to be unsuitable or a poor match for the role he was appointed to.”
The omission of this information during the public protector’s initial probe was a possible crime.
“Had this information been disclosed and made available to the investigation team by COJ, it remains doubtful if the allegations relating to Mr. Sibiya’s appointment would have been held to be unsubstantiated,” said Mkhwebane.
Brink also alerted Mkhwebane to other possible irregularities that were not disclosed during the first probe.
A job description for the post of Head of Department (HOD) of GFIS was approved on 28 July 2017 – several months after the appointment of General Sibiya to the position on 8 November 2016, alleged Brink.
General Sibiya was offered a salary at the level of a head of department (HOD) in the COJ, which was not reported to the Municipal Council as required.
As a result of the grading General Sibiya’s salary was increased from R1 200 000 to R1 841 095 per annum with effect from 1 July 2017.
Brink also told the public protector that General Sibiya’s conditions of service as a unit head were converted to those of HOD for GFIS without the necessary approval of the Municipal Council.
The grading results of the newly approved job description of HOD for GFIS were made at an Executive Director level 2B and implemented in favour of General Sibiya retrospectively from 1 July 2017.
The upgrade was approved by the COJ’s then City Manager Dr. Ndivhoswani Lukhwareni and Head of Legal Services Mafoane Mogashoa.
“Mr. Brink further advised that non-disclosure of the above information to the Public Protector by Dr. Lukhwareni and Mr. Mogashoa may have made them liable for the offence in terms of section 11 of the Public Protector Act 23 of 1994 (PPA),” said Mkhwebane.
“It is against this very non-disclosure of critical information by COJ that my office shall proceed to lay a case with the South African Police Service to allow for criminal investigations for possible infractions of the PPA.”
Earlier this month, General Sibiya’s suspended powers to investigate were reinstated by the Johannesburg High Court, which ordered the COJ to restore them.
Around the same time, General Sibiya took voluntary leave amid investigations into his alleged unlawful purchase of intelligence-gathering tools.