Simelane to face music
The disciplinary hearing of advocate Menzi Simelane, the former National Prosecuting Authority boss, might call into question the integrity of Justice Minister Jeff Radebe and President Jacob Zuma.
While Simelane's fate as an advocate hangs in the balance, a senior Gauteng advocate said the focus should now turn to Radebe.
"Without a doubt he used and abused his position to ensure Zuma's protection. What he did is incomprehensible. It is an abuse of power," said the advocate.
The accusations by the advocate - who has inside knowledge of the disciplinary proceedings - were made as Simelane prepares for a hearing by the Johannesburg Bar Council, of which he is a member.
Simelane came under the spotlight again after the Constitutional Court ruled on Friday last week that his appointment by Zuma was irregular and invalid in the light of Simelane's testimony before the Ginwala commission in 2009.
The commission was convened to assess former director of Public Prosecution Vusi Pikoli's fitness to hold office.
Simelane's hearing, expected within the month, will be held to determine whether he should be subjected to more punitive action.
Simelane could find himself fighting for his career.
Johannesburg Bar chairman advocate Craig Watt-Pringle declined to comment.
The authority referred all questions to the Presidency.
Presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj said no decision has been taken on who should head the authority.
"The president respects and abides by the judg ment, which will be taken into account in mapping the way forward," Maharaj said.
The advocate close to the impending hearing said: "While the focus should be on Simelane, those who used him in their power games should not be forgotten.
"It is clear from the Constitutional Court judgment and that of the Supreme Court of Appeal that Simelane's appointment was questionable," he said.
"The Constitutional Court ruling questioned whether the president acted lawfully in exercising his power to appoint Simelane to his position - its conclusion was that he acted neither lawfully nor rationally."
The advocate said the charges against Simelane would hone in on the latest Constitutional Court ruling.