The signing of the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) Amendment Bill into law is just one step towards securing the independence of the Directorate. This is according to the Council for the Advancement of the South African Constitution (CASAC).

President Cyril Ramaphosa signed the Bill into law a few days ago. It makes provision for a new process of appointing and suspending the IPID head.

CASAC says the Police Minister’s extensive role in the new appointment process of the IPID head is still a concern.

“We welcome the fact that the Act has finally been signed by the President. This comes almost four years after the judgment of the Constitutional Court in the McBride matter, which protected the independence of IPID and directed Parliament to amend the Act to provide for the fact that there should be Parliamentary oversight over the suspension and removal of the head of that body. This has finally happened but it does not fully secure the independence of IPID which still has issues regarding the appointment of the head of IPID with the Minister playing a far too prominent role in that process,” says CASAC Executive Secretary Lawson Naidoo.

In May, Parliament’s Police Committee gave the Department of Police three months to appoint a permanent head for IPID.