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NPA was in favour of prosecuting Zuma

Sapa

Top prosecutors at the NPA were overwhelmingly in favour of pressing ahead with the corruption case against Jacob Zuma, says a newspaper report.

Willie Hofmeyr. (Paul Botes, M&G)

Prosecutors had also dismissed the so called 'spy tapes' as irrelevent just days before the charges were dropped in 2009, the Sunday Times has reported.

This was revealed in more than 300 pages of internal emails, memos and meetings, the paper stated. This was according to an early edition of the newspaper.

The report continued that the documents included minutes of a briefing held in former head of the National Prosecuting Authority Mokotedi Mpshe's boardroom in March 2009 by asset forfeiture unit head Willie Hofmeyr and Pretoria prosecutor Sibongile Mzinyathi – the only two officials who listened to the tapes.

Zuma's lawyer Michael Hulley approached Hofmeyr with "new evidence" that  he said warranted dropping the charges against Zuma – phone tapes of Scorpions boss Leonard McCarthy, which he asked Hofmeyr to listen to.

According to Hofmeyr and Mzinyathi's notes while they listened to the tapes, the recordings revealed that McCarthy was "part of a campaign for Thabo Mbeki" to win the ANC 2007 elective conference which Zuma won.

Dismissed with costs
After Mpshe made the announcement to drop the charges, a flurry of emails and memos revealed how unhappy top prosecutors were with his decision.  

A bid by the National Prosecuting Authority to halt the distribution of the Sunday Times edition failed in the High Court in Pretoria on Saturday evening.

Acting Judge Nomsa Khumalo said since the paper was already in circulation on Saturday evening, interdicting the distribution process would serve no purpose. Several people in the court had copies of the Sunday edition in court.

After hearing presentations from legal representatives for the Sunday Times and the NPA, Khumalo ruled that the court would not interdict the already ongoing distribution on Saturday night.

"The applicant (NPA) was alerted to the matter on the 15 November and has failed to prove to this court that the submission now (to halt the distribution) is an urgent matter,” said Khumalo.

The NPA's bid was dismissed with costs.

Democratic Alliance Gauteng MPL Jack Bloom tweeted a picture of the front page saying: "the front page the NPA doesn't want you to see". – Sapa

 

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