State to foot Simelane’s legal bills – report

2012-07-19 06:47

The State will pay the legal costs for Menzi Simelane whose appointment as national director of public prosecutions has been challenged by the Democratic Alliance.

Business Day reported today that, “the amount of legal costs incurred and paid on behalf of Advocate Simelane thus far ... amounted to R1 770 324.90.” This was said by Justice Minister Jeff Radebe in response to a parliamentary question yesterday.

“Advocate Simelane’s legal costs... were incurred as a result of a legal challenge... Advocate Simelane was cited in papers as the incumbent of the post and it was on this basis that he was granted legal representation at state expense.”

The amount would not be repayed.

“I do not intend recovering the said costs from Advocate Simelane for the following reasons: the court challenge was a review and setting aside of his appointment,” Radebe was quoted as saying.

“Advocate Simelane was appointed by the president and therefore occupied the post ... There is no irregularity or unlawfulness on the part of Advocate Simelane when he was appointed.”

Simelane has been on special leave since the end of last year when the Supreme Court of Appeal ruled that President Jacob Zuma had and Radebe had failed to consider misgivings about Simelane when he was appointed to the post.

The matter is now on appeal to the Constitutional Court.

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