Simelane appointment ‘invalid’

2011-12-01 09:30

The Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) this morning set aside the appointment of controversial advocate Menzi Simelane as head of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).

President Jacob Zuma appointed Simelane as national director of public prosecutions in 2009 after receiving advice from Justice Minister Jeff Radebe.

The DA challenged Simelane’s appointment, claiming he was not a fit and proper person to head the NPA.

They based this argument primarily on Simelane’s evidence before the Ginwala Inquiry into former NPA boss Vusi Pikoli’s fitness to hold office.

The inquiry found that Simelane’s evidence was not truthful in all respects and that he had mislead the commission.

Zuma will now have to appoint a new NDPP, properly re-appoint Simelane or challenge the SCA’s judgment in the Constitutional Court.

In a harsh judgment by Judge Mahomed Navsa, supported by a full bench, he ruled that Zuma “did not undertake a proper enquiry of whether the objective requirements of (the legislation) were satisfied. On the available evidence the president could in any event not have reached a conclusion favourable to Mr Simelane, as there were too many unresolved questions concerning his integrity and experience.”

Read the judgment here.

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