Following a request by Freedom Under Law and the Helen Suzman Foundation for Zuma to suspend NPA boss Shaun Abrahams and two other three advocates, the president has written to Abrahams to state why he shouldn’t be suspended.
Confirming the development, Presidency spokesman Bongani Ngqulunga, on Tuesday, said the three advocates have received the notice.
As contained in the notice, Zuma requested Shaun Abrahams, advocates Sibongile Mzinyathi and Torie Pretorius to tell him why they would not be suspended pending an inquiry into their fitness to hold office.
Also, the presidency categorically stated that Zuma questioned the roles played by their respective offices.
Advocate Mzinyathi is Director of Public Prosecutions while Advocate Pretorius is the Acting Special Director of Public Prosecutions.
Zuma’s decision stemmed from the public concern raised by Freedom under Law and Helen Suzman Foundation over the manner with which Shaun and his cohorts handled the fraud charges against Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and former deputy SA Revenue Service commissioner Ivan Pillay and former SARS commissioner Oupa Magashula.
In the related story, NPA boss Shaun Abrahams and Hawks boss LieutenantGeneral Mthandazo “Berning” Ntlemeza are currently in a war of words over the acquittal of Gordhan.
In the heated argument between the two justice lords, Ntlemeza said Abrahams failed to act in good faith when he discharged Gordhan. The Hawks boss, a vocal supporter of Zuma, also slammed the NPA boss for yielding so easily to public outcry against the minister’s charges.
Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, Oupa Magashula and Ivan Pillay were acquitted by the NDPP after the public resisted and rallied behind them over fraud charges against them.
The minister was controversially charged with fraud for endorsing the early retirement of Pillay and then rehiring him as a consultant.