Busa’s offer of resources to NPA may include private prosecutors

11th January 2022 By: Terence Creamer - Creamer Media Editor

Busa’s offer of resources to NPA may include private prosecutors

Busa CEO Cas Coovadia
Photo by: Creamer Media

Business Unity South Africa (Busa) has resolved to support the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) with resources to enable it to “urgently prepare cases” against those identified in a recently released report arising from the Judicial Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture.

Such resources could include private prosecutors, Busa said in a statement released following a special meeting of its board held on January 10.

“We will coordinate initiatives by our members into a serious and concerted mechanism to provide necessary resources to the NPA to urgently prepare cases to prosecute those identified in the report.

“Such resources could include private prosecutors and other relevant assistance.

“We will engage the NPA about this,” CEO Cas Coovadia said in a statement.

The board meeting was convened in response to Part One of the inquiry’s report, which contains evidence of fraud and corruption at South African Airways, the South African Revenue Service and the New Age newspaper.

It was delivered to President Cyril Ramaphosa by Acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo on January 4, with two subsequent reports to follow and with the second report to focus on corruption and maladministration at State-owned companies such as Denel, Eskom and Transnet.

The Busa board also asked relevant members to “urgently engage with any businesses mentioned in the report, in order to get a full briefing from those businesses about the allegations and to understand what actions those businesses intend taking”.

Coovadia said that the outcome of these engagements would inform its position on these aspects of the report.

The Zondo report names various large companies that the NPA should consider prosecuting for fraud or corruption, notably Nedbank and Bain & Co.

Nedbank, which has denied any wrongdoing, has indicated that it will cooperate with any investigation that could arise.

Coovadia made a commitment that Busa would address the outcomes of Part One of the report with the seriousness and urgency it deserves.

“We are, however, an organisation of business associations and have the responsibility to engage members and ensure due process in arriving at a mandated position on the report.

“We are processing this with utmost urgency.”

Busa stressed, however, that it supported the general recommendations contained in the report, including one on the protection of whistleblowers and “a role for business in addressing the dire circumstances some of the whistleblowers are in”.