By Political Ignoramus
COMMANDERS of SA’s Death Squads. Left: Dirk Coetzee and right Eugene de Kock nicknamed Prime Evil. The Harmse Commission into Death Squads, most publicized, and ultimately the most disappointing, exonerated the Nationalist Party of any wrongdoing.
1. Frankly I think this Commission of Enquiry on State of Capture is a waste of money. Just pandering to the whimsical fancies of opposition political parties.
2. I have not read the Terms of Reference because I still feel the Commission will eventually be chasing shadows long after the horse has bolted because our law enforcement agencies did not have the stomach to strike whilst the iron was still hot, by following the trail of evidence at the time the allegations of impropriety were levelled.
Who has ever heard of someone committing crimes and leaving tell-tale evidence in the face of whistle blowers? If I was implicated by Thuli Madonsela in her State of Capture Report I would have taken the trouble of finding ways and means of rebutting those aspects of evidence that cast me in a bad light and destroyed anything tangible linking me to any wrongdoing. It is indeed easy to rebut the “he says and I say evidence”. Phone records of numbers called without the content of the actual conversations do not prove wrongdoing and can be explained away by offering an innocuous explanation for those phone calls and simple denials without proffering an explanation.
3. This is a simple police matter for investigation and for NPA to decide whether there are prosecutable cases arising therefrom based on the existence of cogent and sustainable evidence proving commission of several crimes, if any.
4. Let those tasked with the administration of our criminal justice do their work without fear or favour or prejudice. After the Commission of Enquiry on State of Capture has ceased to exist, you still need the police to present dockets of any wrong-doing and the NPA to determine whether there is any prosecutable conduct notwithstanding the findings of the Commission.
5. Remember how the Harms Commission of Enquiry into Hit Squads was a huge disappointment, clearing the National Party government from being in cahoots with any Death Squads? In fact Harms cleared the police from any wrongdoing leading to Eugene de Kock being a General in the SAP before he was arrested and charged on the basis of diligent police work and painstaking detection by fearless few individuals within the SAP and the then Attorney-General’s Office of Transvaal?
6. People do not commit crimes in order to be caught nor do they give the law enforcement agencies a fair chance of securing convictions by leaving traces of evidence of wrongdoing in plain sight undisturbed for discovery and gathering! The idea of having this Commission is so myopic and mind-boggling for me. It is another indication of our characteristic superficial, political correctness propensity marked by knee-jerk reactions where we unrealistically expect mechanical solutions for complex, deep-seated and substantive problems.
A Commission of Enquiry on State of Capture is not going to be a magic wand that we wave and all problems disappear and all solutions appear! We are kidding ourselves if we think the sensationalism that will come with the Commission will solve our nuanced problem of those who become the shadow government by influencing elected public officials for personal gain. You will always have others to fill the corruptors’ shoes, albeit of different colour or complexion and different shapes and sizes, who will replace the Guptas and their ilk. Tsotsi taal aptly sums up this Commission “umlilo wamaphepha” to denote that it is a hype about nothing really! The presumption of innocence in any allegations of wrongdoing applies until a court of law pronounces on the guilt of the person who stand accused of something. A Commission of Enquiry is not a court of law to determine guilt despite the fact that it is headed by a Deputy Chief Justice!