I am a prosecutor - Jiba to speak out

2015-08-19 12:01
Nomgcobo Jiba (Netwerk24)

Nomgcobo Jiba (Netwerk24)

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Pretoria - Deputy prosecutions boss Nomgcobo Jiba is elaborating on how she feels after fraud and perjury charges against her were dropped - as expected - on Wednesday.

Her lawyer, Zola Majavu, said his client, who had been called "slimy", would talk about "how we got to this point" at a press conference in Johannesburg on Wednesday.

"We are not talking about a normal or usual withdrawal," he said outside the court.

He was disappointed Magistrate Martin Van Wyk would not let him submit a letter from her during the brief withdrawal process in the Specialised Commercial Crimes Court in Pretoria, but respected the decision.

On Tuesday newly installed National Director of Public Prosecutions, Shaun Abrahams, announced charges against his deputy would be withdrawn.

This took place after consultations with regional head of the of the specialised criminal unit, Advocate Marshal Mogathle, and was not his own decision, he said.

“Late yesterday [Monday] I received a decision from the regional head in which he declined to prosecute Advocate Jiba,” Abrahams said.

“I have been assured that this decision is rational and sound in law and there are no reasonable prospects for successful prosecution and as such, the matter will be withdrawn in court tomorrow [Wednesday].”

Jiba was also appointed to head prosecutions countrywide, to the surprise of many critics who have accused her of trying to protect former crime intelligence head, Richard Mdluli.

"I must say I do feel vindicated and I do feel relieved that as of today I am going to be focusing on what I have to do," she said outside the court. "I am a prosecutor."

Jiba said she remained loyal to the prosecutions service and the public.

Her lawyer Zola Majavu said a press briefing would be held at 11:30 in Johannesburg for Jiba to say more.

But she would not talk about the gist of the case, which involved an attempt at prosecuting top KwaZulu-Natal member of the Hawks, Johan Booysen, for racketeering.

Last year the High Court in Durban threw out the charges against Booysen, who was suspended at the time.

The judge agreed with Booysen’s assertion Jiba had lied about having certain statements before her before prosecuting, and could therefore not have used them to make her decision.

Booysen was accused of running a criminal enterprise consisting of members of the former Cato Manor Organised Crime Unit that he was in charge of.

In July charges of fraud, corruption and money laundering against Mdluli, financial head of the police's crime intelligence unit, Solly Lazarus, and former head of procurement, Colonel Heine Barnard, were struck off the roll in the same court.

This was because of outstanding investigations and, reportedly, the struggle to get some documents declassified. It could be put back on the roll again.

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