Rogue cop Colonel Nkosinathi Nomvalo is expected to start his new job at the Hawks head office in Durban on Monday.
Nomvalo, who has a criminal conviction, is the new commander of the Hawks and will oversee the Serious and Violent Crimes, Narcotics, Fraud, Human Trafficking and Political Violence units.
Nomvalo was sentenced to one year in prison, suspended for five years, or a R10 000 fine, by the Amanzimtoti Magistrate’s Court after losing his firearm while on duty in 2015. He paid the fine.
He was found guilty under the Firearm and Ammunition Act and was sentenced in July last year. Nomvalo, and his colleague Kholisile Zangwa, told the court that their firearms had been stolen from a vehicle stationed in the parking lot of the Galleria Mall.
The matter was investigated by the Hawks and investigators obtained CCTV footage of the parking lot where the alleged theft took place.
The footage revealed that no one had gained access to their vehicle which cast doubt on their version of events. They were both found guilty.
Nomvalo previously worked in the Eastern Cape with former Hawks boss Berning Ntlemeza and then moved to the anti-corruption unit in Pretoria. It is understood both Nomvalo and Zangwa were promoted by Ntlemeza pending the criminal charges.
Almost a year after his conviction Nomvalo landed the plum job in Durban. He was expected to resume his duties on Wednesday but apparently asked to start tomorrow.
Members of the Hawks and the DA’s spokesperson on police, Dianne Kohler Barnard, called for Nomvalo to be removed from the position.
She said the herculean task of cleaning criminality out of the SAPS must be tackled by the national police commissioner as a matter of the highest priority.
“Simultaneously, there are traps relating to cadre deployment by waves of embedded political appointees. There are officers who have been convicted of crimes yet maintain their positions within the service,” said Kohler Barnard.
She alleged Nomvalo was a crony of Ntlemeza.
“Previously, an attempt was made to promote Nomvalo, but that was thwarted by media reports of his pending criminal case. Now another attempt has been made, a very convincing attempt,” said Kohler Barnard.
Kohler Barnard has asked the Independent Police Investigative Directive (Ipid) to investigate the matter and to provide answers.
“They must tell me why a convicted criminal still works within the Hawks, let alone within the SAPS,” said Kohler Barnard.
Earlier this year, Police Minister Bheki Cele, responding to Kohler Barnard in a written parliamentary response, stated that there were at least 27 members within the crime intelligence unit who had criminal records.
Speaking to the Sunday Tribune on Friday, Cele reaffirmed that his stance on police members with criminal records was clear.
“We have appointed a new head of the Hawks, Advocate Godfrey Lebeya, who is now responsible for re-establishing the integrity of the Hawks. I am sure Nomvalo is on his radar and he will do what he has to do to deal with the matter,” said Cele.
He said police members in crucial units such as crime intelligence and the Hawks should not have criminal records as it compromised the integrity of these units. “I am sure advocate Lebeya will deal with this matter in a way that will satisfy all of us and one that will uphold the integrity of the unit,” said Cele.
Nomvalo declined to comment.