Handing of case to Hawks miffed police investigators
Investigations into the murder of businessman Wandile Bozwana were rocked by behind-thescenes drama between the police investigations
unit and the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) over its decision to refer the case to the Hawks.
Sunday World can reveal that more than eight meetings were held between then acting national police commissioner Khomots Phahlane former NPA head Shaun Abrahams, then Hawks boss Berning Ntlemeza and the police investigations unit between October 5 and November 8 2015, which led to a decision to refer the case to the Hawks.
It has emerged through senior police sources, some of whom attended the meetings, that there was serious push back from the investigators and their bosses against the decision, allegedly because they feared that the case was going to be buried.
According to the officers, the meetings had happened two days after the unit had applied for warrants of arrests for former North West premier Supra Mahumapelo, Matthews Wolmarans, Peter Mohale and Vusi Reginald “Khekhe” Mathibela with the NPA.
Mahumapelo and Wolmarans denied any involvement in the murder, while Mathibela is in police custody undergoing trial.
One of the high-ranking officers privy to the meetings revealed that it was after the investigators protested against the decision that they were seconded to the Hawks to continue working on the case.
However, the officers revealed that upon arrival at the Hawks, the docket was divided into phases.
The first phase was set to focus on the hitmen. The second phase was then earmarked to focus on the high-profile politicians and businessmen who were considered persons of interest.
The same officer said the decision demoralised investigators who later left the Hawks team. Hawks spokesperson Hangwani Mulaudzi confirmed last week that the case has now been sent back to the police.
This, according to sources, is what is responsible for the fresh impetus in the investigations.
By Aubrey Mothombeni