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Political parties respond positively to appointment of Shamila Batohi as South Africa’s Chief Prosecutor

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Political parties respond positively to appointment of Shamila Batohi as South Africa’s Chief Prosecutor

The appointment of Advocate Shamila Batohi as the new boss of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) was generally well received by the public and politicians.

Ramaphosa’s choice to appoint Adv Shamila Batohi as the new National Director of Public Prosecutions has been met with some positive commentary from other political parties.

The UDM Women’s Organisation (UDEMWO) commented on Batohi becoming the first woman to lead the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA). “We are very pleased that, for a change, a woman has been appointed into a high position,” UDEMWO said in a statement released on Wednesday, 5 December 2018.

“We strongly believe that her appointment is based on merit, as well as her hard work and dedication she has shown in the justice field. Her track record speaks for itself,” the organisation said.

The IFP spokesperson on Justice and Constitutional Development, EM Buthelezi said Batohi was more than capable of fulfilling her new role. “Advocate Batohi demonstrates experience and maturity as she is a seasoned prosecutor,” Buthelezi said in a statement published on Tuesday, 4 December 2018.

Batohi was the first regional head of the Directorate of Special Operations in KwaZulu-Natal. She was also part of the Investigation Task Unit established by former president Nelson Mandela in 1995.

“She has further demonstrated her work as she led the prosecution of the Protea’s captain Hansie Cronje at the King Commission,” Buthelezi said. The IFP also said they were happy with the level of transparency in the appointment of the new NDPP.

Meanwhile, the DA’s shadow minister of justice, Glynnis Breytanbach, said the party wanted Batohi to include investigating the president who appointed her in her state capture investigations.

“Tackling state capture head-on also means making sure that the donation from the controversial Bosasa CEO, Gavin Watson, to the president’s campaign fund is investigated and, if necessary, prosecuted without fear or favour,” Breytanbach said.

President Ramaphosa said on Tuesday, 4 December 2018 that he involved legal experts and Chapter 9 institutions in making his decision to appoint the new NDPP.

Xiletelo Mabasa
x.mabasa@politicalanalysis.co.za

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