South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has established a new corruption investigative unit to be based at the National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP)’s office to probe high-profile cases –including state capture.
Ramaphosa’s spokesperson Khusela Diko said on Wednesday that the setting of the new unit was a move by the president to intensify “government’s campaign against corruption and state capture” in the country.
Ramaphosa first announced the introduction of the directorate during his state of the nation address in February this year and it was then dubbed the “new Scorpions.”
Announcing the plan for the new directorate then‚ Ramaphosa said it would focus on evidence that had emerged from the Zondo commission and other inquiries on corruption.
“The directorate will bring together a range of investigatory and prosecutorial capacity from within government and in the private sector under an investigating director reporting to the NDPP‚” he said at the time.
Diko said the new directorate would also investigate common law offences -- including fraud‚ forgery‚ uttering‚ theft and any offence involving dishonesty.
It would also investigate statutory offences such as the contravention of acts relating to finance‚ intelligence‚ organised crime‚ combating of corrupt activities‚ municipal and public finance management acts.