News24 has reported that the Portfolio Committee on Police has called for lifestyle audits and the vetting of all police officers near national parks.
This, after the committee expressed concern over the arrest of a police officer, along with nine other accused, on rhino poaching allegations.
It was reported on Monday that there were 12 suspects and that two were killed during a shootout in the Kruger National Park. SANParks says a police officer based at the Skukuza Police Station was also handcuffed and remains in custody.
Three suspects were found in possession of a heavy calibre hunting rifle, ammunition, poaching equipment and a fresh set of rhino horns.
One of the suspects has since been identified as a recently retired Frelimo commander from Mozambique who was in full camouflage uniform at the time of his arrest.
Spokesperson Isaac Phaahla said: “Unfortunately, in some of those arrests three of the suspects were fatally wounded and the others were taken into custody. One of them was injured and taken to hospital but he is also under custody.”
In a statement released on Tuesday, the Portfolio Committee welcomed the arrests over the past five days.
These arrests highlighted the work accomplished by stakeholders dealing with rhino poaching, the committee said.
"The committee is, however, concerned that, among those arrested, is a police officer based [at] Skukuza police station. This points to the presence of corrupt elements among the police, which undermines the rule of law they are mandated to uphold," committee chairperson Francois Beukman said.
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