PRETORIA, November 09 (ANA) – National spokesperson of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation [Hawks], Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi has resigned, the elite crime fighting unit of the South African Police Service announced on Monday night.
“The spokesperson of the Hawks, Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi has tendered his resignation this morning to the national head of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, Lieutenant General Godfrey Lebeya for consideration,” said Hawks spokesperson Colonel Katlego Mogale.
“The national head [Lebeya] considered the resignation. The reasons for tendering the resignation [are] cited as personal. The national head has accepted the resignation with immediate effect.”
The opposition Democratic Alliance has been calling for Mulaudzi’s head, after his foundation, a non-profit organisation (NPO) he chairs in Limpopo province, received R3 million from the embattled National Lotteries Commission (NLC).
The NLC and Mulaudzi have been the subject of a backlash recently, with the DA questioning the commission’s relationship with Mulaudzi as the Hawks are currently investigating some of NLC’s grants.
The Hangwani Mulaudzi Foundation, pocketed R3m from the commission to establish a sports centre for the community of Mashamba in July last year.
The centre would cater to more than 100 children and would have features such as a block of toilets, an office and a change-room facility. It will also be fitted with a borehole with running taps, and fencing.
The Star newspaper reported last month that the Covid-19 pandemic has since derailed the work in getting the facilities ready.
A frustrated Mulaudzi told the publication that political leaders have put his life in danger with their agendas.
“I don’t know what kind of message they are trying to send out. I have to observe countless times now when I’m driving or walking because people think I carry case dockets and there is nothing like that.”
Mulaudzi went on to clarify that he does not deal directly with investigations at the Hawks.
“I don’t have that authority at Hawks. I don’t influence any investigations. I just communicate information that is given to me.”
The spokesperson said he is not the sole director of the foundation.
“It’s not my foundation only. It’s an NPO and there are others who have partnered with me in running this foundation,” he said.
At the time, The Star asked him to comment on why the foundation uses his name, Mulaudzi said: “That was done because my name is popular, simple.”
However, the DA’s Mat Cuthbert indicated that there was a clear conflict of interest which has the potential to derail the entire investigation into large-scale looting at the NLC.
He argued that the funding raises alarm bells considering that the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) had recently handed over evidence related to the Denzhe Primary Care scandal to the Hawks to investigate.
This comes after the NPO mysteriously scored a whopping R7.5m from the commission which is now being investigated by Hawks.
Mulaudzi reiterated that he is not aware of investigating procedures and that it does not concern him as the spokesperson.
He said the foundation, which was established in 2017, was meant to give skills to children in his community.
The commission’s spokesperson Ndivhuho Mafela said the foundation applied and was approved for an NLC grant in the sport and recreation sector.
Mafela further refused to be drawn into the alleged conflict of interest against Mulaudzi.
“The NLC does not fund individuals, but registered NGOs/NPOs that work for the public good,” he said.
– African News Agency (ANA); Editing by Devereaux Morkel