Private funding for NPA can weaken public perception: Gutto

Justice Minister Ronald Lamola
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Constitutional Law expert Shadrack Gutto has disagreed with Justice Minister Ronald Lamola’s decision to defend the National Prosecuting Authority’s (NPA) attempts to seek private funding.

Earlier this month, National Director of Public Prosecutions Shamila Batohi revealed that the NPA had been inundated by offers from private citizens and businesses to provide financial support to the NPA.

This after they had raised budgetary constraint concerns at the National Assembly’s Portfolio Committee on Justice.

Lamola says there’s no harm in seeking ways of raising funds for the NPA considering that it is operating on a shoestring budget.

EFF leader Julius Malema has warned that some donors could be among what he terms ‘capitalists’ who may be involved in crimes, including tax evasion.

Gutto says seeking private funding for the NPA could result in the weakening of the public’s perception of the prosecuting body.

He says, “It is quite unprecedented and I don’t think the Justice Minister is correct. He should try to divert from that and really begin to ask government what is the budget and how much is located in terms of expenditure.”

“I think the NPA, if it is weakened in its perception, it will weaken in its performance. People will be suspecting it and not trust the outcomes of its investigations. I don’t think that this kind of support ought to be taken,” adds Gutto.