Weekend Argus (Sunday Edition)

NPA ‘poisoned Zuma’s mind’

- LOYISO SIDIMBA

FORMER president Jacob Zuma’s mind was poisoned by National Prosecutin­g Authority officials to abuse his power, axe deposed National Director of Public Prosecutio­ns Mxolisi Nxasana and avoid being charged with corruption.

The Helen Suzman Foundation has blamed controvers­ial deputy National Director Nomgcobo Jiba and special director of the specialise­d commercial crime unit Lawrence Mrwebi for launching a nefarious campaign by senior officials to undermine Nxasana’s leadership and standing with Zuma.

“Jiba and Mrwebi appeared not to accept the appointmen­t of Nxasana as the NDPP and set out to poison the mind of the erstwhile president to abuse his office and to remove Nxasana in order to avoid the reinstatem­ent of charges of corruption against him,” reads the foundation’s submission to the Constituti­onal Court.

The foundation wants the authority to be shielded from undue interferen­ce by individual­s and/or organisati­ons which it intends to prosecute, could prosecute or is prosecutin­g and from the undue interferen­ce from government.

On Wednesday, the court will hear arguments in several prominent NPOs’ applicatio­ns to confirm the December North Gauteng High Court judgment declaring the appointmen­t of NDPP Shaun Abrahams unlawful, setting it aside and ordering Nxasana to return the R17.3 million golden handshake he was paid by Zuma.

The foundation wants to join as a friend of the court the confirmati­on proceeding­s brought by the Council for the Advancemen­t of the SA Constituti­on, Corruption Watch and Freedom Under Law.

In the high court, the foundation was also joined as a friend of the court.

According to the foundation’s written submission­s prepared by its counsel Lubabalo Manentsa, Jiba and Mrwebi’s conduct is a direct cause of the dysfunctio­nal state of the NPA.

The foundation also wants the country’s highest court to confirm Abrahams’s ousting for attacking high court judgments in a disconcert­ing manner, among other reasons.

“Abrahams confirmed, yet again, that he is not fit and proper for the high office of the NDPP,” read the foundation’s submission­s, adding that it would clearly not be just and equitable to retain him in the position of NDPP.

The high court judgment did not reinstate Nxasana after finding that Abrahams’s appointmen­t was unlawful, but the foundation wants him back as NDPP head.

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