Specialised Commercial Crimes Unit head Lawrence Mrwebi and Deputy National Director of Public Prosecutions Nomgcobo Jiba. Pictures: Etienne Creux and Motshwari Mofokeng/African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Cape Town - Parliament has called on President Cyril Ramaphosa to speedily conclude the inquiry into Nomgcobo Jiba and Lawrence Mrwebi's fitness to hold office.

Ramaphosa announced on Thursday that the pair will be suspended pending an inquiry into their fitness to hold office. The inquiry will be led by former justice of the Constitutional Court Yvonne Mokgoro.

Chairperson of Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Justice and Correctional Services Refiloe Moremadi Mothapo said they welcomed the suspension, and inquiry.

“The committee also notes that the President has taken into account the serious nature of the allegations involved and that the work of the criminal justice system is central to all prosecutions, especially the prosecution of corruption cases and the safeguarding of South Africa’s public purse.

“The committee notes further that the President has taken into account their influence over large parts of the NPA, and the importance of the NPA’s image and the integrity of an enquiry, which must result in completely convincing conclusions about the integrity and sound leadership of the NPA,” said Mothapo.

The two advocates have been criticised for their handling of the decision to withdraw criminal charges against former head of Crime Intelligence Richard Mdluli and the manner in which they handled the case against former KwaZulu-Natal Hawks boss Johan Booysen.

In his letter addressed to the pair, Ramaphosa said: “You hold a senior position with influence over a large swathe of the NPA. It is the interest of the NPA’s image as a whole that I consider here, and of the integrity of an enquiry (sic) that must result in the clearest and most convincing conclusions about the integrity, and sound leadership of the NPA”.

Mothapo said this will ensure stability and integrity in a critical institution that has suffered in recent times due to leadership challenges.

“The integrity of the leadership of such an organisation should be unquestionable in order for it to have the support and confidence of the public at large. We further call for these two positions to be filled speedily in an acting capacity in order to avoid a leadership vacuum,” said Mothapo.

Political Bureau