24/02/2018 07:40 SAST | Updated 24/02/2018 07:40 SAST

Ramaphosa's Withdrawal Of 'Futile' NPA Appeal Welcome, Says DA

Former president Jacob Zuma launched an appeal against a ruling concerning the appointment of a new National Prosecuting Authority boss.

REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko
Head of the National Prosecuting Authority Shaun Abrahams during a media briefing, in Pretoria, South Africa, October 31,2016.

The DA has welcomed President Cyril Ramaphosa's decision to withdraw the "futile appeal, launched by his predecessor, Jacob Zuma" in the appointment of a new National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP).

The DA's federal council chairperson, James Selfe, said he hoped the decision signalled the end of Shaun Abrahams' tenure as head of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).

"We can only hope that this will result in the immediate removal of the discredited National Director of Public Prosecutions and Zuma's keeper, Advocate Abrahams," Selfe said.

"The time has arrived for the NPA to reinstate the 783 counts of corruption, fraud, racketeering and money laundering against Zuma, and the new head of the NPA must make this their first priority."

READ: These Are The Ghosts And Scandals Zuma Leaves Us With

Selfe urged Ramaphosa to involve a parliamentary committee in the appointment of a new, impartial NDPP.

This comes after Ramaphosa's announcement that he was withdrawing the appeal concerning the appointment of a new NDPP.

Appointments set aside

"The only issue that had been appealed by the president of the republic was whether or not the former president or his then deputy should appoint the NDPP," said Tyrone Seale, acting spokesperson for Ramaphosa.

"That matter is now moot," Seale said.

Corruption Watch, Freedom Under Law and the Council for the Advancement of the South African Constitution went to court over a golden handshake agreement between former NDDP Mxolisi Nxasana and former president Jacob Zuma.

Judge Dunstan Mlambo in the North Gauteng High Court found last year that the settlement agreement between Zuma and Nxasana was unlawful and that the termination of Nxasana's appointment was invalid.

As a result, the decision to appoint Abrahams as the NDDP was also found to be invalid by Mlambo.

He set aside Abrahams' appointment and ordered Ramaphosa, then deputy president, to appoint a replacement.

"President Ramaphosa has indicated that he will no longer prosecute the appeal in this matter and will therefore not be present in court to argue the matter on February 28," Seale said.

The matter will be before the Constitutional Court next week Wednesday where the court will consider whether or not to confirm the High Court's decision that some sections of the National Prosecuting Authority Act are unconstitutional.

-- News24