The South African cabinet wants to seek legal advice on inferences made by Judge Chris Nicholson in his judgment on ANC President Jacob Zuma’s appeal to have charges brought against him set aside.
Government spokesperson Themba Maseko announced in Pretoria cabinet decided on Thursday to seek legal advice on the inferences made by Judge Nicholson that either president Thabo Mbeki or the executive “interfered with the prosecuting decisions of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) regarding the prosecution of any person or persons.”
“Government will continue to work hard to defend the integrity of all our constitutional structures and the country’s reputation as a constitutional state,” Maseko said.
Cabinet in its ordinary meeting this week, discussed the recent judgment in the court case between the Zuma and hte NPA.
“Cabinet respects the judiciary and its decisions. However, Cabinet does not accept the suggestion that either the president or the executive interfered with the prosecuting decisions of the NPA regarding the prosecution of any person or persons,” he said.
Maseko added that the untested inference that there was political interference with the prosecuting decisions of the NPA in this or any other case was untrue, unfounded and did not hold water.
he said the Constitution and the NPA Act gave the minister of justice and constitutional development political oversight over the NPA.
“However, the minister does not participate in decisions about individual prosecutions. Therefore, the suggestion that the interaction between the minister and the director of public prosecutions constitutes interference is incorrect.”
Maseko said government was not rejecting the judgment but was concerned with the judge’s comments.
“Cabinet does not agree that there were some political interference. We want to focus on the inferences that state that the Cabinet interfered with the NPA as we believe that these misconceptions are untrue and can be corrected.” – BuaNews