What they said

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As to whether charges against Ndebele would be dropped, Mfaku said: “This is de­nied. The NPA re­ceived rep­re­sen­ta­tions from the ac­cused, the head of the SCCU in Pre­to­ria is con­sid­er­ing the said rep­re­sen­ta­tions. No de­ci­sion has been taken in re­spect of the mat­ter.”

Mfaku said Abra­hams “did not over­ride any de­ci­sion nor did [he] take any de­ci­sion to pros­e­cute in this mat­ter. The pros­e­cu­tion team took the de­ci­sion to pros­e­cute in­de­pen­dently in line with the NPA pol­icy di­rec­tives and con­veyed their de­ci­sion to the lead­er­ship of the in­sti­tu­tion.”

He said Abra­hams “does not per­son­ally in­volve him­self with mat­ters” but is “reg­u­larly briefed on mat­ters in terms of sec­tion 34(2) and (3) of the NPA Act, read with sec­tion 22(1)”.

“The NDPP con­sid­ers mat­ters per­son­ally when re­view­ing a de­ci­sion of a di­rec­tor of pub­lic pros­e­cu­tions or a spe­cial di­rec­tor of pub­lic pros­e­cu­tions ... and af­ter hav­ing re­ceived rep­re­sen­ta­tions. Where pol­icy di­rec­tives have not been com­plied with, the NDPP may in­ter­vene in the pros­e­cu­to­rial process in terms of the pro­vi­sions of the NPA Act,” he said.

“The in­de­pen­dence of the NDPP and his of­fice is sacro­sanct.”

Trans­port Min­is­ter Dipuo Peters’ spokesper­son, Ish­mael Mnisi, said: “As you might be aware, your en­quiry is based on a mat­ter that is be­fore a court of law and the sub ju­dice prin­ci­ple ap­plies. There­fore, fur­ther com­ment on this mat­ters is re­served.”

RTMC spokesper­son Si­mon Zwane said: “The al­le­ga­tions made that the CEO and the RTMC played any role in the events that led to the crim­i­nal charges are both un­for­tu­nate and un­founded. The RTMC CEO never lodged any com­plaint about the progress of the in­ves­ti­ga­tion, nor threat­ened about any po­lit­i­cal in­ter­fer­ence.

“The same al­le­ga­tions were made in the ... ap­pli­ca­tion in the crim­i­nal court and such ap­pli­ca­tion was dis­missed on the grounds that there was strong ev­i­dence and [that] Tasima and its coac­cused should stand trial.”

Zwane said an af­fi­davit later filed by Serunye and con­firmed by Cloete de­nied there was any po­lit­i­cal in­ter­fer­ence.

“The min­is­ter of trans­port never met with the in­ves­ti­gat­ing of­fi­cer and al­le­ga­tions are just a witch­hunt,” Zwane said.

“If there were any threats made dur­ing their en­gage­ments, surely the po­lice will have laid a crim­i­nal case of in­tim­i­da­tion and de­feat­ing the ends of jus­tice.”

The Hawks did not re­spond to a re­quest for com­ment.

UN­DER PRES­SURE A note from Cloete’s in­ves­ti­ga­tion diary that sug­gests he was threat­ened with ‘min­is­te­rial in­ter­ven­tion’

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