Citizen Reporter
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1 minute read
24 May 2017
11:21 am

Abrahams says NPA has no vendetta against Pravin Gordhan

Citizen Reporter

The chief state prosecutor says there is no evidence to prove the public prosecutions body is captured.

National Prosecuting Authority head Shaun Abrahams during a press briefing, 31 October 2016, NPA head Office, Pretoria. Picture: Jacques Nelles

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) boss Advocate Shaun Abrahams has once again denied he was “captured”, saying there was never a vendetta against Pravin Gordhan after the botched prosecution of the former finance minister on fraud charges last year.

Briefing parliament’s standing committee on public accounts on Tuesday, the chief state prosecutor said there was no evidence to prove the public prosecutions body was acting under the influence of political leaders when it prosecuted Gordhan, Business Day reported.

“One should look at the evidence on the matter … The decision was made to prosecute the former minister. I was asked to review the matter and decided to decline to prosecute the former minister,” Abrahams said. “It is irresponsible to say someone is captured when there is no evidence to back that up. I say to the citizenry, we should be judged by the work we do.”

The NPA dropped the controversial fraud charges questioned by legal pundits against Gordhan, along with former SA Revenue Service (Sars) officials Oupa Magashula and his then deputy, Ivan Pillay, in October last year.

According to the report, Abrahams and acting Hawks head Yolisa Matakata were briefing MPs about cases being handled by the anti-corruption task team. The interdepartmental body – made up of NPA, Hawks and Sars – was established in 2010 to accelerate high-priority and high-profile corruption cases.

The task team is probing Eskom’s coal-supply contract with Gupta-controlled Tegeta Exploration and Resources. There is also a Treasury review of the contract.

Abrahams was grilled by MPs on investigations regarding cases referred by former public protector Thuli Madonsela to the NPA and the Hawks relating to her State of Capture report. He said probes were still continuing, but could not provide in-depth information.

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