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Advocate Batohi vows to fight factionalism crippling NPA if appointed

Advocate Shamiela Batohi made the comments during her interview at the Union Buildings on Friday for the position of National Director of Public Prosecutions.

A YouTube video screengrab of Advocate Shamiela Batohi.

PRETORIA – A legal advisor at the International Criminal Court and former National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) prosecutor says she would investigate the alleged factions ripping the organisation apart if she was appointed as the top prosecutor.

Advocate Shamiela Batohi made the comments during her interview at the Union Buildings on Friday for the position of National Director of Public Prosecutions.

A panel set up by President Cyril Ramaphosa has interviewed 11 candidates since Wednesday in a search for South Africa’s next top prosecutor.

Advocate Batohi says among her first duties as prosecutions boss will be a study of the internal situation.

“Factions generally thrive around ideas or thoughts about certain things. So, I think the first thing one needs to do is to try and figure it out what is it that’s causing this decision within the institution.”

She says prosecutors have been demotivated by what has happened at the NPA but this can change.

“When prosecutors see that the NPA again is on the right track, I think it’s very easy to motivate prosecutors because the job that we do is just one of the best jobs in the world.

“You’re fighting for justice for victims, so to be a prosecutor, you’re the voice of the victim in court.”

The panel has until early next month to recommend three candidates to president Ramaphosa.

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