Johannesburg - The National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) Shaun Abrahams and his deputy Nomgcobo Jiba did not breach the law when she was seen on multiple occasions visiting the NPA’s offices, says the State attorney.
This is according to the state attorney Gosiame Peter Seleka who was responding to questions raised by Freedom Under Law (FUL) on why Abrahams had allowed Jiba to enter NPA headquarters when she was barred from doing so by a 2017 High Court ruling.
Last year Judge Billy Mothle granted an order that both Jiba and Specialised Commercial Crimes Unit head Lawrence Mrwebi had to face a disciplinary inquiry and they had to be suspended pending the outcome of the inquiries.
He, however, suspended the implementation of this, pending the outcome of the pair’s appeal proceedings to the Supreme Court of Appeals.
Judge Mothle ordered that both are prohibited from performing any functions relating to their offices in the NPA and may not enter the NPA’s offices, nor may they engage in any discussion concerning any pending cases under consideration by the NPA, pending the finalisation of their appeals before the SCA.
On Sunday FUL revealed that it was seeking to approach the courts for a contempt of court order as Jiba was seen more than once visiting the NPA.
The lobby group was angered by the fact that Abrahams knew and allowed Jiba to enter the building.
In a letter written to the FUL, Seleka defends Abraham’s decision to allow Jiba to visit the office.
News24 reports that Seleka said Jiba was not in contravention of the ruling because she was not at NPA offices to do any work related to her job and plus the ruling barring her had since been suspended according to the Superior Courts Act, meaning the court order barring her from the NPA had been suspended until Jiba’s appeal was heard and ruled on.
Seleka also said Abrahams and sought Jiba’s advice on a case she had knowledge of and she had to also submit documents related to her position.
However, FUL has dismissed this explanation and said it was clear that Abrahams and Jiba did not understand the law.
“Significantly, the court also holds that pending finalisation of appeal in GCB matter, Jiba can't perform any function at NPA, can't visit NPA's offices and can't engage in any discussions concerning NPA cases,” said FUL’s Nicole Fritz.
“The letter maintains that as leave to appeal the judgment is being sought, the order is suspended. But this ignores that the prohibition on Jiba's visiting was very clearly intended to have immediate application and enforcement,” she said.
The FUL said it is pushing ahead with its court application that Jiba and Abrahams were in contempt of a court order.