Heath quits

2011-12-15 15:23

Advocate Willem Heath, the new Special Investigating Unit (SIU) head, has resigned.

A no-holds-barred interview with City Press directly led to Heath’s resignation, justice department spokesperson Tlali Tlali said this afternoon.

In the interview, a few days after his appointment, Heath accused former president Thabo Mbeki of initiating rape and corruption charges against President Jacob Zuma.

According to a statement by Justice Minister Jeff Radebe, he interviewed Heath on behalf of Zuma to “look into comments” made by Heath in City Press.

“Following the discussion on the matter, parties were agreed that it was untenable for Advocate Heath to continue to hold office as the new head of the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) after he was recently appointed by the president.

“He tendered his resignation as the head of the SIU in writing on Wednesday, 14 December 2011 and I have brought same to the attention of the president. The president has accepted his resignation and it has become effective,” Radebe said in his statement.

He thanked Heath “for showing maturity and appreciating that the manner in which events unfolded following his appointment, created a perception, rightly or wrongly, that he would not be in a position to execute his duties in an independent manner as expected or required of an incumbent holding that position”.

Deputy national director of public prosecutions Nomgcobo Jiba was appointed the acting head of the SIU until further notice.

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