Jiba suspended Breytenbach without valid reason, #MokgoroInquiry hears

Pretoria – Former state prosecutor Glynnis Breytenbach said she was suspended from her position by suspended Deputy National Director of Public Prosecutions Nomgcobo Jiba without any valid reason.

Breytenbach was giving testimony at the Mokgoro Inquiry on Tuesday. 

The inquiry was instituted by president Cyril Ramaphosa to look into the fitness of Jiba and senior prosecutor Lawrence Mrwebi to hold office. Both have been criticised in court for decisions they have taken and have also been accused of acting with political motives. 

Breytenbach was suspended just days after she sent a letter to Jiba asking her as the acting NDPP to review Mrwebi’s decision to withdraw charges against former crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli.

The suspension was also related to Kumba Iron Ore versus Imperial Crown Trading (ICT), which Breytenbach was working on. 

"I was on leave, playing golf, when I started receiving calls from colleagues asking why I had been suspended. I did not know. I was not aware of the details of the complaint which had been lodged against me," said Breytenbach.

She was eventually cleared in an internal disciplinary inquiry and later in court.

During cross-examination by advocate Norman Arendse, acting for Jiba, Breytenbach said she viewed the disciplinary hearing as a way to get her out of the way. 

"And based on what I know now I believe (the disciplinary hearing) it was used to get me off the Mdluli case, the ICT case and the Bosasa case."

Breytenbach said her disciplinary hearing was only fair because she had a legal team that ensured it was, not because Jiba made sure the hearing followed due process.

Arendse asked Breytenbach if Jiba had ever insulted her. 

"I regard being put through a disciplinary inquiry which was baseless as an insult; I regard being prosecuted without reason as an insult," she said.

The inquiry continues on Wednesday with evidence from director of public prosecutions for North Gauteng, Sibongile Mzinyathi.

African News Agency (ANA)

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