NPA’s private donor funding protocols finalised and are being implemented, says Lamola

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Justice Minister Ronald Lamola. PHOTO: Siyabulela Duda/GCIS
Justice Minister Ronald Lamola. PHOTO: Siyabulela Duda/GCIS
  • Donor funding protocols for the National Prosecuting Authority have been finalised and implemented.
  • The idea of private donations first made headlines after the then-head of the NPA's investigative directorate, Hermione Cronjé, mooted the idea.
  • In June last year, Justice Minister Ronald Lamola promised that the protocols would be in place by the end of that month.

Protocols to allow the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) to accept donor funding in order to solve complex cases have been finalised and are being implemented.

This is according to Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola in response to a written parliamentary question from DA MP Werner Horn.

Horn wanted details on the implementation protocols to enable the NPA to use donor funding for high-profile, complex corruption cases.

Lamola said, following consultations, the NPA was dealing with donor support in line with established protocols, prescripts and delegations.

He said: 

  • The current system where the accounting officer has delegated the acceptance of donations in-kind to the deputy director-general within the NPA will remain;
  • Where a donation is in cash, the normal regime of channelling funds through the National Treasury will apply;
  • The Office of the Auditor-General, as well as the internal audit team, will fulfil the role of oversight in line with relevant regulations.

"The NPA is currently in the final stages of approving the amended NPA donor funding policy, which will be aligned to the National Treasury donor funding guidelines and regulations. This will create internal control systems in dealing with all donations within the NPA. An internal register of all donations is being kept centrally and will enable the NPA to disclose in the annual financial statements as per the National Treasury requirements," Lamola added. 

In June last year, Lamola promised that the protocols would be in place by the end of that month, but that never happened. 

READ | NPA should be allowed to use private donor funding by end of June - Ronald Lamola

The idea of private donations first made headlines after then-head of the NPA's investigative directorate, Hermione Cronjé, mooted the idea of using private funds for the cash-strapped institution.

Last year, News24 reported that the NPA needed an additional R1.7 billion to deal with the slew of prosecutions that should stem from the State Capture Inquiry, prosecute those implicated, and modernise the organisation.

When Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana tabled his Budget in February last year, it appeared that he had brought some relief to the perennially underfunded NPA and the other corruption-busting agencies.

However, according to the NPA, the money was not enough to bring everyone involved in state capture to book.

In the 2021-2022 financial year, the NPA spent 99.72% of its budget of R4.5 billion.

For 2023-2024, it got R4.8 billion, and the year after that, R5 billion.

The NPA received an additional R1.1 billion over the next three years.

READ | 2022: The year political big guns landed in the dock

Almost R394 million of this will go to the Investigating Directorate (ID), which deals with state capture cases, meaning that 91 investigators and prosecutors can be brought into the ID. 

During a 2019 budget vote speech on the Presidency budget, EFF leader Julius Malema raised concern about private donations to the NPA.

Malema warned that some of the donors could be among the "capitalists" who may be involved in financial crimes like tax evasion.

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