The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) says the suspended African National Congress (ANC) Secretary-General Ace Magashule’s intention is to delay his criminal trial to avoid pleading guilty to the numerous charges he is facing.

The NPA filed its response in the High Court in Bloemfontein on the asbestos roofing scandal.

This after the lawyers for Magashule and former Human Settlements Head Thabane Zulu filed papers in the same court last month challenging the legality of charges against them.

Free State Director of Public Prosecutions Navilla Somaru says Magashule’s demands to have the state disclose its list of witnesses of people that are implicating him is a violation of the Constitution. Magashule maintains that there is no case against him but rather a political sabotage.

The NPA says Ace Magashule has a lot to answer because he held a position of authority when he was the premier of the Free State.

The state further argues that Magashule’s role as a Premier makes him liable to be charged as he exercised all the executive authority regarding the province.

The case relates to the alleged illegal awarding of a R255 million tender that was meant to replace Asbestos roofs in the Free State.

A total of sixteen accused including five companies are set to face charges related to fraud, corruption and money laundering emanating from the asbestos scandal.

In the video below legal reporter Karyn Maughan discusses Magashule’s request for the NPA to reveal those implicating him in the asbestos case: