10 November 2017

South Africa: Judge the NPA By What It Does in Court - Advocate

Advocate Malini Govender from the Specialised Commercial Crimes Unit is adamant that the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) is working optimally.

"If South Africa wants to judge the National Prosecuting Authority, judge us by what we are doing in court," Govender said.

Speaking at a media round table discussion on anti-corruption at the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) offices in Pretoria on Friday morning, Govender said her unit met 88% of their target, the best since 1998. The panel faced some tough questions from the media during the session.

Govender said it was incorrect to say there were no cases opened in terms of state capture.

While Hawks Brigadier Zama Basie said they were investigating state capture, Basie said Treasury formed a critical part of the investigations.

When asked about the NPA allowing President Jacob Zuma to make representations in his corruption case, Govender said they will always consider representations from any accused in any case, and not just the president.

Govender said her unit was focused on working on complex organised corruption cases.

She was part of a panel of speakers which included Advocate Knorx Molelle from the Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU), Advocate Gerhard Visagie from the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) and Roderick Davids from the sub-committee: National Anti-Corruption Strategy.

The round table discussion, which lasted over two hours in total, revealed that the unit had finalised nine serious private sector corruption cases and five public sector corruption matters over the last year. No unification

Convictions were obtained against 311 government officials from April 2016 to date.

Govender said the corruption case against former Northern Cape chairperson John Block had stood out for her.

Block and businessman Christo Scholtz were sentenced to an effective 15 years in jail for money laundering and corruption.

Meanwhile, Davids said South Africa had never had a unified approach to fighting corruption.

He said government was working on a national strategy and that their diagnostic report had found that financial management, supply chain management and leadership were the main issues relating to corruption.

Davids said they would have an in-depth consultative process with stakeholders to map out the best strategy.

Source: News24

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