Private group lays charges against Zuma, Masutha

Johannesburg - Charges of corruption and defeating the ends of justice have been laid against President Jacob Zuma and Justice Minister Michael Masutha over the R17m payout to former National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) Mxolisi Nxasana, Accountability Now director Paul Hoffman said.

The civil complaint was laid at Ocean View police station in Cape Town on Monday, Hoffman said.

The charges are in terms of Section 9 of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act.

Accountability Now is a registered NPO that works to keep political leaders accountable for their actions.

He explained that the Constitution says the NDPP must act independently and without fear or favour. There must also not be any interference in the functioning of the NDPP.

In May a commission of inquiry into Nxasana's fitness to hold office was called off at the last minute by Zuma's office and it was later reported that Nxasana had received a R17m settlement to leave.

No reason was given for Nxasana's departure and he has since been replaced by advocate Shaun Abrahams.

Corrupt activity

Accountability Now believes the settlement is allegedly a corrupt activity and could be a contravention of Section 9(2)(d) of the Act.

This is because it allegedly shows favour to Zuma by vacating office rather than pursuing charges relating to his home in Nkandla, or the charges that were dropped against Zuma after his former financial adviser Schabir Shaik was convicted of corruption for facilitating a bribe to Zuma from an arms company.

Shaik is on parole.

The organisation included allowing ''certain well connected wedding guests'' to land at Waterkloof Air Force Base - a reference to guests landing at the base in a private jet to attend a Gupta family wedding - and ''defeating the ends of justice by spiriting [Sudanese President Omar] Al-Bashir out of the country'' to its complaint.

Bashir managed to leave the country after an African Union summit, in spite of an order to all border posts preventing his exit pending an application to have him handed to the International Criminal Court to face accusations of crimes against humanity and genocide.

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