High-ranking Port Elizabeth policeman Major-General Dawie Rabie has returned to work after being suspended following allegations of domestic violence and interference in a criminal probe.
But confusion surrounds how internal probe processes unfolded as both Rabie and his bosses refused to say whether the charges had been withdrawn or not.
It also emerged yesterday that the provincial police commissioner has not even seen the final report yet.
In any event, either Rabie was acquitted or the internal charges against him were withdrawn.
His three-month suspension is linked to a family domestic violence case in July.
On Monday, Rabie was back at work and holding meetings at the Mount Road police station cluster offices.
The office of provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Liziwe Ntshinga – who is aware he is back at work – claims it is waiting for the final report from the internal hearing which was held behind closed doors last week.
Provincial police spokeswoman Brigadier Marinda Mills confirmed yesterday that the hearing and report had been concluded.
“The provincial commissioner’s office is still awaiting the report of the chairperson of the disciplinary hearing and can therefore not comment at this stage,”Mills said.
“The SAPS is under no obligation to release information on the hearing. “We consider it a matter between the employee and employer.”
According to police policy, either the chairperson or the provincial commissioner can reinstate Rabie.
On calling Rabie yesterday, he said: “I have nothing to say to you. Goodbye,” before hanging up.
In addition to Rabie being back at work, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) also declined to prosecute Rabie.
The withdrawal of the criminal case comes after both Rabie’s son and wife declined to give testimony or evidence about the incident.
Criminal and department hearings differ, with internal hearings only requiring that the balance of probability be proved.
Rabie oversees the management of the Walmer, Humewood, Kabega Park, Gelvandale, Bethelsdorp, Algoa Park and Mount Road police stations.
The criminal investigation was conducted by watchdog body the Independent Police Investigative Directorate, which also failed to obtain statements from Rabie’s family members, resulting in the case falling flat.
Prosecuting Authority spokesman Tsepo Ndwalaza said that after reviewing the file there had been no reasonable prospects of a successful prosecution.
A decision had therefore been made not to prosecute the accused [Rabie], Ndwalaza said yesterday.
The probe followed an incident in which Rabie allegedly changed the locks on the doors of his home and locked his family out in freezing weather.
There are also allegations of interference and misconduct in the criminal probe.
The late-night drama forced police and security officials to kick open the front door to allow his wife, daughter and two grandchildren back in.
The internal probe of misconduct was spearheaded by deputy national police commissioner Lieutenant- General Sharon Japhta.
At the time of the investigation, the South African Policing Union called for Rabie’s suspension as he was allegedly intimidating and threatening lower-ranking officers to get the case withdrawn.
While Rabie was suspended, allegations of favouritism linked to promotions within his office also surfaced.
Another internal police probe was launched into these allegations, which were made in a letter to Ntshinga by the Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union.
The probe was confirmed.