Vusi Pikoli’s book drops a bombshell

2013-10-21 00:00

BILLY Masetlha, former spy boss and a senior member of the ANC, allegedly told advocate Vusi Pikoli he could not prosecute President Jacob Zuma for corruption.

Masetlha, former head of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), placed further pressure on Pikoli, the former head of the National Prosecution Authority (NPA) by telling him that Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe (then president) was also of the opinion that Zuma should not be prosecuted.

Pikoli made these claims in his newly published memoirs My Second Initiation. In the book he tells of regular meetings between him, Masetlha and the disgraced former head of police Jackie Selebi in the period before his suspension as head of the NPA.

He refers to a specific meeting between the three at Selebi’s Waterkloof home.

He writes that Selebi and Masetlha wanted to know what his position was on Zuma, but he had nipped the questions in the bud, telling them he could not tell them. He said Masetlha then told him that it was impossible to prosecute JZ. “He did not provide legal grounds; for me it was a pure political sentiment … ” writes Pikoli.

Masetlha, a loyal Zuma supporter who works in Luthuli house and is a member of the ANC’s executive council, yesterday laughed off Pikoli’s statement and said he would comment later in the day. After that he did not answer sister paper Beeld’ s calls.

Motlanthe’s spokesperson Thabo Masebe said Motlanthe would never have made such a suggestion or sent someone to talk on his behalf to Pikoli.

Professor Marinus Wiechers, an expert on the Constitution, said if Pikoli’s allegations were true, it would be a very serious matter.

“It is defeating the ends of justice if you impair the prosecuting authority in their duties or try to influence them not to do their job.”

In his book Pikoli alleges that several politicians in the Zuma camp also wanted assurances from him after his suspension that he would not prosecute the president. In exchange, they would allegedly have ensured his re-appointment.

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