Senior detective kicked off Jiba case

EWN has learnt Colonel Boats Botha has been removed from the case & will have no further part in it.

NPA deputy head, Nomgcobo Jiba. Picture: EWN

PRETORIA - Eyewitness News has learnt that the senior police detective responsible for investigating the Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions has been removed from the case, but this has been strongly denied by police.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) revealed on Tuesday that a summons was served on head Mxolisi Nxasana because Nomgcobo Jiba could not be found and had not reported to work.

Jiba faces two counts of fraud and one of perjury for the failed prosecution of senior Durban police officer Johan Booysen, against whom she allegedly illegally authorised racketeering charges.

EWN understands Colonel Boats Botha was relieved of the Nomgcobo Jiba docket and told he will have no further part in the investigation.

While not referring to names, Nxasana confirmed as much in an interview on Wednesday.

"The investigating officer has been involved from the inception, up to a point when he tried to serve the summons upon the deputy national director."

The police say that Botha was never the investigating officer in the matter and is merely deployed to serve in the National Detective's office.

Meanwhile, Nxasana has rubbished claims by the police that they had no part in the issuing of a summons on Jiba.

The police and NPA have come to blows over the case.

National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega's office said in a statement on Wednesday that the police had not issued a summons, nor were they looking for her.

But Nxasana says that's not true.

"It's just impossible. It cannot happen that the NPA can issue the summons without the police. In fact it's the police who issued the summons."

He says the summons was drafted with co-operation from the investigating officer.

"The investigating officer in the matter, working together with very senior prosecutor at the NPA was handling the investigation up to a point where the prosecutor was satisfied that there is a prima facie case."

Nxasana says he's raised concerns with Phiyega over her involvement in the investigation into his deputy as suggestions of political interference emerge.

He says Phiyega phoned him twice on Tuesday after the NPA announced police detectives had attempted to serve a summons on Jiba.

Nxasana says Phiyega's calls worried him and he raised this concern with her in the conversations.

"I'm afraid that we'll be sending the wrong message if some people were to have access to the highest office to the extent that they will intervene."

He says this is not the first time a detective has been removed from the Jiba case.

Phiyega's office insists that the investigating officer in this case made no contact with the NPA and further denied the general has made any attempt to interfere in the matter.