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#Sona2019 & state capture: Firmer teeth for NPA to deal with serious corruption

The president said the new National Director of Public Prosecutions will establish a directorate to deal with serious corruption.

FILE: New NDPP Shamila Batohi at the Union Buildings in Pretoria on 4 December 2018. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

CAPE TOWN - President Cyril Ramphosa said on Thursday during his State of the Nation Address that the National Director of Public Prosecutions Shamila Batohi would be developing a new directorate in her office to deal with serious corruption.

This came after the president said the “revelations emerging from the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture and other commissions are deeply disturbing, for they reveal a breadth and depth of criminal wrongdoing that challenges the very foundation of our democratic state”.

This is what he said in his speech on the matter.

“We commend … commissions for the work they are doing, often under challenging circumstances, to uncover the truth.

"These commissions need to be able to do their work without any hindrance, and we call on all those people who are in a position to assist them in their investigations to make themselves available.

"While these commissions will in time make findings and recommendations in line with their mandates, evidence of criminal activity that emerges must be evaluated by the criminal justice system.

"Where there is a basis to prosecute, prosecutions must follow swiftly and stolen public funds must be recovered urgently.

"To this end, we have agreed with the new National Director of Public Prosecutions, that there is an urgent need to establish in the office of the NDPP an investigating directorate dealing with serious corruption and associated offences, in accordance with section 7 of the NPA Act.

"I will soon be promulgating a proclamation that will set out the specific terms of reference of the directorate.

"In broad terms, the directorate will focus on the evidence that has emerged from the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture, other commissions and disciplinary inquiries.

"It will identify priority cases to investigate and prosecute and will recover assets identified to be the proceeds of corruption.

"The directorate will bring together a range of investigatory and prosecutorial capacity from within government and in the private sector under an investigating director reporting to the NDPP.

"In the longer term, we will work with the NPA and other agencies of law enforcement to develop a more enduring solution that will strengthen the capacity of the criminal justice system to deal with corruption."

READ: President Ramaphosa’s Sona 2019 full speech

State of the Nation Address... by on Scribd

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