Zuma institutes NPA head inquiry

2014-07-05 15:51
(Sumaya Hisham, AP)

(Sumaya Hisham, AP)

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Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma has decided to institute an inquiry into NPA head Mxolisi Nxasana, the presidency said on Saturday.

The decision was made in terms of Section 12(6)(a)(iv) of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) Act 32 of 1998, the presidency said in a statement.

This followed careful consideration of all the matters before Zuma.

"The details regarding the establishment of the enquiry will be communicated to the public in due course," the presidency said.

On Friday, The New Age reported that Zuma had met Nxasana recently to discuss the national director of public prosecutions' future.

It was at that meeting Zuma reportedly asked Nxasana to resign or face being fired, with Nxasana then reportedly pleading with Zuma to reconsider his position.

Nxasana told the newspaper that the meeting did not take place.

"It never happened. He never asked me to resign. That I can assure you. We are communicating with the president. He is still applying his mind," Nxasana was quoted as saying.

Later on Friday, both the presidency and the NPA said the story was false.

Zuma's spokesperson Mac Maharaj said: "The president has not met with Mr Nxasana and has not asked him to resign."

NPA spokesperson Nathi Mncube said: "The story is a pure fabrication by information peddlers with a very active imagination."

Security clearance

On 9 June, Justice Minister Mike Masutha told reporters in Pretoria that no decision had been taken on how to handle Nxasana's security clearance.

He said under the NPA Act, President Jacob Zuma had the power to initiate an inquiry into Nxasana.

Former justice minister Jeff Radebe had reportedly instructed Nxasana to resign a few days before the new Cabinet was announced.

Nxasana had apparently not been given a security clearance because of past brushes with the law. He has refused to resign.

According to media reports, Nxasana stood trial in 1985 for murder but was acquitted, based on his version of self-defence.

He reportedly also admitted to being arrested for "careless driving and refusing arrest" in September last year.

In addition he was fined R2 000, suspended for three years, by the KwaZulu-Natal Law Society for misconduct about 12 years ago.

Nxasana has vowed to challenge the matter in court or an inquiry should he be fired.

On 6 June, the Mail & Guardian reported that NPA security head Tshilidzi Ramahana wrote to the NPA's CEO defending himself after receiving a suspension notice over Nxasana's security clearance.

NPA chief executive Karen van Rensburg apparently sent Ramahana a suspension notice days before, citing "gross insubordination and gross misconduct" for refusing to take responsibility for Nxasana's failure to disclose the murder he was acquitted of.

- SAPA
Read more on:    npa  |  jacob zuma  |  mxolisi nxasana  |  pretoria
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