Work under way to establish permanent Investigating Directorate
Government is working on legislation to ensure the independence and security of tenure of the National Prosecuting Authority’s (NPA) Investigating Directorate (ID).
In October last year, President Cyril Ramaphosa said to strengthen anti-corruption capabilities, the ID — established to prosecute state capture and other major corruption cases — would become a permanent entity within the NPA.
“To ensure that the independence and security of tenure of the incumbents in the ID is strengthened, we have a new bill which is undergoing consultative processes between relevant departments,” Lamola told media on Monday.
He said this built on Ramaphosa’s announcement in October regarding the implementation of recommendations in the Zondo commission report.
“In the interim, while the consultative processes are under way, we have assigned peace officer powers to the Investigative Directorate. This will enable them to arrest people, take statements, conduct search and seizure operations,” Lamola said.
The “silo” approach had been identified as a weak-point in the criminal justice system’s fight against fraud and corruption.
“We see greater levels of collaboration and co-ordination between the Investigative Directorate, Asset Forfeiture Unit, the Specialised Commercial Crime Unit, Special Investigating Unit and the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation.”
He said the Anti-Corruption Task Team had 35 cases in court involving 180 accused individuals.
“The Investigating Directorate has enrolled 32 cases involving 187 accused individuals [who] have appeared in court for alleged state capture-related offences.
“This is not something to be scoffed at. It is proof that accountability is happening. This is the same work that has led to R12.5bn being recovered.”
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