The legal representative for eight National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) officials, who have been implicated at the Zondo Commission, says allegations levelled against them have no merit.
Counsel for the implicated parties read their affidavits into the record on Friday.
The prosecutors previously withdrew their application for leave to cross-examine former Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) head Robert McBride and former KwaZulu-Natal Hawks head General Johan Booysen.
The group includes advocates Andrew Chauke, Sello Maema, Anthony Mosing, Torie Pretorius, Molatlhwa Mashuga, George Baloyi, Marshall Mokgatle and Raymond Mathenjwa.
Advocate Tebogo Mathibedi SC, for the NPA officials, told acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, who chairs the commission, they had performed their statutory duties and obligations without fear, favour or prejudice.
“Whichever decision they took to prosecute or decline to prosecute was legally justified,” he said.
“The allegations levelled against the implicated officials are malicious; they are unfounded [and] there is no merit.”
Mathibedi added those who implicated his clients “… are the ones who are actually criminals. They are not crime busters”.
Among the things he spoke about was the Cato Manor saga, saying 28 people died at the hands of police officers led by Booysen. Mathibedi said at some of the scenes, firearms were “planted” by members of the Cato Manor unit.
He added he had been in contact with the parents of a 16-year-old boy who was shot dead while sleeping.
“The father says justice has failed him.”
Mathibedi said both Maema and Mathenjwa had demonstrated in their affidavit that evidence, which was at their disposal, had led them to instituting charges against Booysen and other officers.
“We respectively submit the charging was justified.”
He added the report, which was used to withdraw charges against Booysen and others, was “flawed”.
Advocate Kgaogelo Ramaimela, also for the NPA officials, dealt with the so-called rendition case, saying the decision taken by the prosecutors involved in charging McBride with defeating the ends of justice “had nothing to do with being captured”.
The charges against him relate to the investigation of Lieutenant-General Anwa Dramat, the former head of the Hawks, who was accused of involvement in the so-called illegal rendition of Zimbabwean nationals.
McBride cleared him of any wrongdoing.
Ramaimela said it was “quite interesting” that McBride was appointed on 3 March (2014), and two days after his appointment he had immediately instructed IPID investigator Innocent Khuba to brief him on the rendition case, adding he was asked him to uplift the docket and the evidence should be reviewed.
During his testimony in April 2019, McBride said he was briefed on the rendition case when he was appointed as IPID executive in March 2014.
However, it became clear to him the case was not investigated independently in line with the IPID Act.
McBride told Zondo he gave the task of overseeing all review processes to IPID national head of investigations Matthew Sesoko and told Khuba, who investigated the rendition case in Limpopo, to report to Sesoko about it.
He also told Zondo about a preliminary report which recommended that Dramat and former Gauteng Hawks head Shadrack Sibiya be prosecuted.
However, after their phone records were analysed in the rendition case, Sibiya’s record showed he was nowhere near the areas where the Zimbabweans were tracked down and arrested, McBride said.
This despite reports that Sibiya was present at the arrest of a group of Zimbabweans allegedly subjected to an illegal rendition.
The final report, which was handed to the National Director of Public Prosecutions, found evidence related to Sibiya’s involvement could not support his prosecution.
McBride told Zondo further investigations revealed there was no element of crime committed relating to Dramat in the rendition case.