Hewana's behaviour 'not in line with official conduct'

Former Goodwood police station commander Siphiwe Hewana’s interference with the drunken-driving docket of former African National Congress chief whip Tony Yengeni was “not in line”, the Parow Regional Court heard on Monday.

“I honestly feel that the behaviour of Senior Superintendent Hewana was never in line with the SAPS’s [South African Police Service] vision or code of conduct,” provincial director of the detective service Johannes Brand told the court.

Brand was testifying at the sentencing hearing for Hewana.

Hewana is to be sentenced on March 23 on a charge of defeating the ends of justice. He was acquitted on two other counts: conspiracy to commit perjury and interfering with police officials in the execution of their duties.

Yengeni was arrested in 2007 for drunken driving after 9pm at night. As this was a violation of his parole conditions, Yengeni faced going back to prison.

Hewana’s trial resulted from his fraudulent attempt to protect Yengeni by having the original drunken-driving docket, with the correct time of arrest on it, destroyed, and having a new docket opened to reflect the time of arrest as being before 9pm.

Brand said the vision of the SAPS was to create a safe and secure environment for all the people of South Africa, to investigate any offence that threatens the safety of the people and to ensure criminals are brought to justice.

He said the SAPS also has a responsibility to provide a high-quality of service, with honesty and integrity.

In terms of the Code of Conduct, police officials have to uphold the Constitution and the law, and prevent all actions that threatened the safety of the community.

Because Hewana was a station commander at the time of the violation, his sentence has to send out a harsh message to all police officials and only jail time would send such a message, said Brand.—Sapa



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