Delays in starting NPA media leak probe

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Zak Yacoob aug 8 INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS Former Constitutional Court judge Zak Yacoob has expressed concern about a delay in getting documents from the NPA so that he could begin his investigation into media leaks at the prosecuting authority. File photo: Bongiwe Mchunu

Johannesburg - Retired judge Zac Yacoob on Thursday expressed concern about a delay in getting documents from the NPA so that he could begin his investigation into media leaks at the prosecuting authority, SAfm reported on Thursday.

Yacoob told the broadcaster the National Prosecuting Authority was meant to deliver documents to him within 48 hours but there was a delay.

According to the broadcaster, Yacoob doubted he could meet the three-month deadline in which to complete his investigation.

“It's getting less and less feasible because I said three months 12 days ago, and 12 days have been lost already because in those 12 days we haven't got the documents yet,” he told SAfm.

“So as time goes on the three months time limit becomes less and less doable and the problem is if I can't finish by the middle of October, I can start on this again only at the beginning of December, that's the problem.”

In a statement at the end of July, the NPA said it had appointed Yacoob chairman of a fact finding committee to investigate allegations of the involvement of NPA employees in leaking information to the media and other parties.

The commission was authorised to enter any building occupied by any NPA employee, inspect and seize any documents, records and books related to the investigation.

In June, NPA integrity management unit (IMU) head Prince Mokotedi was suspended after a document on former prosecutor Glynnis Breytenbach was leaked to the media. Mokotedi denied leaking it.

A day before his suspension, The Star carried a report on the IMU document which recommended that Breytenbach be criminally charged for corruption, misconduct, conflict of interest, fraud, and racketeering.

In the unit's report, Breytenbach is accused of soliciting a loan of US1 million (about R11m) from businessman Nathan Kirsh, a complainant in two cases she was prosecuting. Breytenbach is also accused of accepting a R6.3m donation from Kirsh through the FW de Klerk Foundation. She left the NPA to join the Democratic Alliance as an MP.

Last week Thursday, Mokotedi resigned after being served with a formal charge sheet. The NPA could not disclose what charges he faced. - Sapa



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