NPA has capacity to prosecute complex crimes: Batohi

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National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) head Advocate Shamila Batohi is adamant that the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has the capacity to prosecute complex crimes that involve high-profile people.

She was briefing the media virtually amid growing public impatience that no major arrests have been made following the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture hearings.

Batohi’s briefing also comes after the resignation of Investigating Directorate head Advocate Hermione Cronje who will officially vacate office in March next year.

Cronje was appointed in 2019, to lead the newly established Investigative Directorate which is aimed at fighting corruption.

Parliament has called on Batohi and Justice Minister Ronald Lamola to explain Cronje’s departure.

Advocate Batohi says although she understands the impatience of the public, her investigative teams are busy at work.

“I can fully understand the impatience of the people of South Africa in terms of the apparent slow movement with regard to prosecutions. But when we think about what is reasonable and what should be expected, particularly in the context of the ID, we have to remember where the ID started.”

“It started at zero, there was absolutely nothing and we still have a long way to go. We are not anywhere near where we want to be. But where we are at now, clearly there is no guaranteed impunity anymore,” she adds.

In the video below, Batohi addresses the media:

TRC related cases

Members of Parliament have urged the NPA to make the finalisation of Truth and Reconciliation Commission-related cases its priority.

Head of Prosecutions Advocate Rodney de Kock says the TRC investigations are located in the organised crime offices in the various provinces.

He says they have appointed dedicated prosecutors to deal with these cases for a three-year period.

De Kock says the Hawks have also appointed dedicated investigators to work only on TRC cases.

Committee chairperson Bulelani Magwanishe says it is important for these cases to be dealt with as quickly as possible.