Silas Ramaite chosen as acting NPA head after Abrahams forced out

14 August 2018 - 15:59 By TimesLIVE
Silas Ramaite. File Photo.
Silas Ramaite. File Photo.
Image: Trevor Samson/Business Day

Silas Ramaite has been chosen as acting National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP), the presidency said on Tuesday.

The announcement came a day after the Constitutional Court found that the appointment of Advocate Shaun Abrahams as National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) was invalid because his predecessor‚ Mxolisi Nxasana‚ was wrongfully removed from the post by former president Jacob Zuma.

As a consequence‚ President Cyril Ramaphosa faced pressure to ensure that an acting NDPP was appointed as soon as possible.

Ramaphosa has 90 days in which to appoint a permanent NDPP.

Ramaite is the NPA deputy national director responsible for administration and the office for witness protection. He has served as deputy director of the NPA for 15 years.

"President Ramaphosa has wished Dr Ramaite well in his new role and expressed his belief that this week’s court judgment has set the NPA on a path that will restore the integrity of the Authority and build the nation’s confidence in the criminal justice system," Presidency spokeswoman Khusela Diko said.

Independence protected

The court ruled on Monday that no decisions or actions taken by Abrahams during his three-year term could be rendered invalid based solely on the fact that his appointment was found to be invalid.

In a bid to ensure greater independence for the NPA, the court also ordered that a section of the NPA Act that enables the president to suspend the NDPP without pay for an indefinite period is unconstitutional and must be amended.

“The NPA plays a pivotal role in the administration of justice. With a malleable, corrupt or dysfunctional prosecuting authority, many criminals – especially those holding positions of influence – will rarely, if ever, answer for their criminal deeds,” Justice Mbuyiseli Madlanga stated.

- This is a developing story

President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed Dr Silas Ramaite as the Acting National Director of Public Prosecutions. Here is what you need to know about him.

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