25% of NPA workforce has been affected by COVID-19, NDPP Batohi tells Scopa

National Director of Public Prosecutions Shamila Batohi said they have now applied to the health department to make NPA staff and prosecutors essential services so they can get vaccinated.

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CAPE TOWN - National Director of Public Prosecutions Shamila Batohi said that a quarter of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA)’s workforce has been affected by COVID-19.

She said that they had now applied to the Health Department to make NPA staff and prosecutors essential services so they could get vaccinated.

Batohi and the heads of the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) and the Hawks on Tuesday briefed Parliament's Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) about its investigations.

The country’s top law enforcement agencies told Parliament that the COVID-19 pandemic has dealt them a heavy blow, affecting their capacity to investigate.

NPA head, Batohi, said that they’d been badly affected by COVID-19 and had asked the Department of Health to assist.

“In the NPA we have been similarly affected with almost the same number (as the Hawks) in terms of percentage of staff affected. We have been engaging with the Department of Health to be essential services to be moved up in terms of vaccinations.”

Batohi and the NPA have pleaded for more finances, describing their goods and services budget as “shameful”.

“And I also want to emphasise that the goods and services budget is shameful, to say the least. We don’t just need people, we need to give people the tools of the trade to do their work. We need to increase technology.”

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