NPA faces legal challenge over Gordhan charges

Freedom Under Law and the Helen Suzman Foundation have written to the National Prosecuting Authority threatening to go to court if their charges against Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan are not withdrawn.

In an urgent letter to National Director of Public Prosecutions Shaun Abrahams‚ the two organisations argue that the conduct of the NPA is baseless and could have serious consequences for the country.

“Your conduct in pressing baseless charges against the minister of finance has‚ and continues to have‚ devastating consequences for the Republic and its economy‚” said the letter.

“This is a matter of paramount public interest and our clients intend to review and set aside your decision to institute the charges against the minister of finance‚ under the constitutional principle of legality and otherwise‚ unless you withdraw the decision or furnish a cogent basis for the actions taken. It has been held in a long line of cases that our clients have standing and an interest to bring such proceedings‚” the two organisations told Abrahams.

The rand plunged and bonds slumped after Gordhan was summoned to appear in court. He was charged with fraud against the backdrop of a battle that has pitted the finance minister against state-owned companies accused of mismanagement and corruption.

Freedom Under Law and the Helen Suzman Foundation have given Abrahams until 4pm on October 21 to drop the charges against Gordhan or face a legal challenge.

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