Spies probe NPA war

2014-06-22 20:29
Mxolisi Nxasana (Picture: City Press)

Mxolisi Nxasana (Picture: City Press)

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Johannesburg - The State Security Agency (SSA) is investigating an alleged plot to oust prosecutions boss Mxolisi Nxasana – but an affidavit it’s using in the probe may be a fake, City Press reports.

The document forms the basis of an investigation that the SSA is conducting into the existence of the plot. City Press understands that Nxasana himself gave the agency a copy of the affidavit.

The bitter feud in the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) with Nxasana in one corner and former acting head Nomgcobo Jiba in the other took a new turn last week.

The affidavit, obtained by City Press, was allegedly deposed to by senior NPA official Terence Joubert and signed on 25 November last year. The document was sent to Nxasana’s private and NPA email addresses from Joubert’s official NPA address on the same day.

Nxasana had only been in the job since August 2013.

Joubert, however, claims this email path must have been forged. It only reached the SSA earlier this week, months after the deposition.

Late on Friday, Joubert, the head of NPA security and risk management in KwaZulu-Natal, told City Press that the affidavit was a fake and that he didn’t depose to it.

“The signature looks like mine, but it has been forged. I won’t get involved in politics in the NPA; I’m not mad. It will be suicide. I’ve been used as a pawn. Something very sinister is going on,” Joubert said.

The affidavit states that Jiba asked a Hawks colonel to wage a dirty tricks campaign against Nxasana. It also says Jiba wanted to embarrass him, force his resignation and be reappointed to lead the NPA.

Joubert said that nobody had contacted him about the document, and said it was “strange” that Nxasana did not contact him to verify its veracity.

No comment

Nxasana declined to comment yesterday. “I’m sorry, I can’t be of any assistance regarding that matter. As you are aware, the minister of justice came here and we made an undertaking not to speak to the media while the president is dealing with the matter,” he said.

Justice spokesperson Lawrence Ngoveni yesterday told City Press that President Jacob Zuma had still not made a decision about a possible inquiry into Nxasana’s fitness to hold office.

Asked if she was aware of the affidavit or any campaign to implicate her in a dirty tricks campaign against Nxasana, Jiba said: “I have taken a conscious decision not to allow myself to be drawn into this matter, and therefore stand by that decision.”

Jiba was the acting national director of public prosecutions (NDPP) after Menzi Simelane was sacked in 2011, and held the position until Nxasana was appointed last August.

The affidavit that Joubert believes was faked says that a team of three policemen, headed by Hawks colonel Welcome Mhlongo, travelled to Umlazi, Durban, to search for dirt on Nxasana.

Nxasana's past

Their efforts centred on an incident in the 1980s when Nxasana, then 18, killed a man in self-defence. He was acquitted of murder.

Mhlongo has denied the allegations.

In the past month, Nxasana has been embroiled in controversy after being denied security clearance due to his past legal problems, which also include two assault convictions and a fine from the Law Society.

Former justice minister Jeff Radebe asked him to resign, but he refused.

Nxasana has since accused Jiba of being part of a cabal colluding with state security agents and police officials to tarnish his name. The “cabal” included NPA commercial crimes unit head Lawrence Mrwebi and security head Tshilidzi Ramahana.

Much of what Nxasana has on Jiba, however, is contained in the affidavit that Joubert says was forged.

“This is all nonsense, a complete fabrication,” he said. “I want this investigated. I’m a pawn in a very dirty business. I know nothing about this.”

Joubert is himself a controversial figure. Several years ago he was implicated in the irregular award of a R20m security tender within the NPA. He was charged but the case was thrown out of court in 2012.

The Sunday Independent reported two weeks ago that Mrwebi, one of Jiba’s allies, faces arrest for trying to interfere in the investigation into Joubert’s complicity in the alleged tender fraud. Joubert admitted that Mrwebi is a close friend, but said he had nothing to do with the withdrawal of the charges. Joubert also claims to have been the whistle-blower in the case.

Read more on:    npa  |  nomgcobo jiba  |  jacob zuma  |  mxolisi nxasana  |  jeff radebe

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