Departure of Abrahams will bring 'stability' to NPA

Shaun Abrahams.
Shaun Abrahams.
Image: ALON SKUY

The Constitutional Court judgment setting aside the appointment of Shaun Abrahams as head of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) upholds the rule of law and brings much-needed stability to the organisation.

That is the view of Freedom Under Law (FUL) and the Helen Suzman Foundation‚ which have both welcomed the judgment.

The Constitutional Court found on Monday that the appointment of Abrahams was invalid because he had benefited from former president Jacob Zuma’s abuse of power. The court directed President Cyril Ramaphosa to appoint a new NPA head within 90 days.

“FUL‚ together with Corruption Watch‚ brought the initial application to challenge the termination and settlement‚ believing these subverted the independence of the NDPP (National Director of Public Prosecutions) and the NPA‚” said FUL.

“FUL is confident [the] judgment holds out the prospect of a reconstructed‚ revitalised NPA‚ with persons of unimpeachable integrity at its helm‚ able to fully play its vital role in securing criminal justice and constitutional democracy and with the public’s confidence that it is able to dispense justice without fear or favour.”

The Helen Suzman Foundation said it “welcomes the judgment and will continue to monitor the implementation of the court’s order as regards the structural independence of the NPA.”

South Africa’s highest court ruled on August 13 2018 that Advocate Shaun Abrahams was not validly appointed to lead the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) because he had benefited from former President Jacob Zuma’s abuse of power. Justice Mbuyiseli Madlanga, writing on behalf of the Constitutional Court’s majority, found that Zuma had used a R17,3 million “golden handshake” to get rid of former NPA head Mxolisi Nxasana.

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