Breytenbach still not back at work

2013-06-14 00:00

ADVOCATE Glynnis Breytenbach has not been back in her office since her meeting with advocate Nom­gcobo Jiba, the acting head of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), despite her suspension having been lifted.

Meanwhile, Jiba accused Breytenbach of giving her employer an ultimatum to prosecute Lieutenant-General Richard Mdluli without following an order to get done critical investigations that are still outstanding. The NPA informed Breytenbach last week that new charges will be investigated against her.

Neither the NPA nor Breytenbach’s lawyer Gerhard Wagenaar has in the past week reacted to repeated questions on why she did not reoccupy her post as the head of the specialised commercial crimes unit in the Gauteng regional court.

Jiba had asked the labour court in Johannesburg in an affidavit to find Breytenbach guilty on 11 of the initial 15 charges of alleged misconduct and to fire her.

According to Jiba’s affidavit, Breytenbach knew all along that the fraud case against Mdluli, the former head of police crime intelligence, had been provisionally withdrawn pending further investigation. She said the investigation on the Mdluli case continued and had not been closed. She said the police are co-operating with the prosecuting authority and, as soon as the investigation was concluded and enough evidence gathered, a decision will be taken to return the case to court.

Jiba’s statement read that Breytenbach did not investigate the case further and did not give her immediate superior Lawrence Mrwebi feedback on her progress or whether she took any steps to close the loopholes in the case.

She said three months later Breytenbach insisted that Mdluli had to be charged, while critical further evidence was still outstanding.

In the memorandum that Breytenbach sent to Jiba on Mrwebi’s decision not to prosecute Mdluli, she did not refer to the outstanding critical evidence or the lack of substance, Jiba’s statement read.

She states that Breytenbach’s actions have irreparably damaged the relationship between employer and employee. She describes the ruling by advocate Selby Mbenenge SC, who chaired the disciplinary committee and found “not one iota” of evidence to back the NPA’s 15 charges against Breytenbach, as unlawful, unreasonable and irrational.

Mbenenge had said in his verdict that it was regrettable that the NPA did not call Jiba to give evidence.

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