A resolute Nomgcobo Jiba does not want her NPA job back
Jiba says she has to move on with her life after the ‘relentless persecution I have faced in the discharge of my functions as a prosecutor’
Former deputy National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) boss Nomgcobo Jiba does not want to be reinstated to her erstwhile job, as she wants to move on with her life.
Jiba made this submission in a letter to the parliamentary portfolio committee on justice and correctional services, which was tasked to determine whether she be reinstated to her job as former deputy national director of public prosecutions or remain fired.
In the letter, Jiba remained steadfast that she had discharged her functions with impeccable personal integrity, never accepted a bribe or acted corruptly, and was not persuaded by anyone to continue or discontinue any prosecution.
Jiba, who was considered former president Jacob Zuma’s go-to person in the NPA, was axed by President Cyril Ramaphosa earlier in 2019 together with former special director of public prosecutions Lawrence Mrwebi after they were found to be unfit for office by an inquiry chaired by retired Constitutional Court justice Yvonne Mokgoro.
The inquiry centred on decisions taken in relation to politically sensitive prosecutions, such as dropping corruption charges against former crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli, who was seen to be a Zuma ally.
In the letter addressed to the speaker of parliament Thandi Modise and seen by Business Day, Jiba writes that she would not be making representations to parliament, which she had until Thursday to make.
“I have taken a decision to move on with my life. I do not seek any restoration by the parliament back to my position in the NPA. For this reason, I will not make any representation in this regard,” Jiba said, ending the battle to get her job back, which has made its turn in the high court and led to the postponement of the committee’s work.
She said her reasons were personal, and that the entire matter has taken a toll on her and her family over the past five years.
“During these years, I have endured unmitigated hurt, stigmatisation and insults, all of which have no factual basis at all. I am not prepared to have this continue any longer. I will not put my life on hold any more,” Jiba wrote.
She said her legal challenge to the president’s decision and the report compiled by Mokgoro and her co-panelists was a principled one, and never personal. She remained adamant that Ramaphosa’s decision and the report undermined the independence of the NPA and the rule of law, but insisted that she had to move on.
“I will not have my 85-year old mother die in anguish like my father, as a result of the unwarranted yet relentless persecution I have faced in the discharge of my functions as a prosecutor and the painful legal battles I have had to endure. I have seen the anguish on the faces of my children as I traveled this journey of unyielding insults and attacks. As I quit, I am launching a formidable battle against that anguish, to focus on my own life, and that of my family. As I said, I leave the rest for history to judge.”