10 blistering quotes from the ConCourt ruling on Shaun Abrahams, Nxasana
The Constitutional Court has found that former president Jacob Zuma's decision to remove Shaun Abraham's predecessor Mxolisi Nxasana from the position of National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) was an abuse of power and unconstitutional.
It further ruled that Abrahams' appointment was unconstitutional and invalid.
Here are 10 scathing quotes from the majority judgment:
1. "Former president Zuma was bent on getting rid of Mr Nxasana by whatever means he could muster. His was an approach that kept on mutating: it was first a stick; then a carrot; a stick once more; and eventually a carrot."
2. "What plainly evinces how desperate former president Zuma was to get rid of Mr Nxasana is that this was followed by a draft settlement in which the amount was left blank. Mr Nxasana was being told to pick whatever figure."
3. "All I am saying is that the very idea that former president Zuma was willing, at least, to consider whatever amount Mr Nxasana inserted speaks volumes. To be more direct, it lends credence to the view that he wanted to get rid of Mr Nxasana at all costs."
4. "The inference is inescapable that he [Zuma] was effectively buying Mr Nxasana out of office. In my book, conduct of that nature compromises the independence of the office of NDPP."
5. "Former president Zuma appointed advocate Abrahams following his unlawful removal of Mr Nxasana. That removal was an abuse of power. Advocate Abrahams benefitted from this abuse of power."
6. "It matters not that he may have been unaware of the abuse of power; the rule of law dictates that the office of NDPP be cleansed of all the ills that have plagued it for the past few years. It would therefore not be just and equitable to retain him as this would not vindicate the rule of law."
7. "Mr Nxasana did not resist paying back the money. And nobody has suggested that he should not. Paying back the money is a natural consequence of the declaration of constitutional invalidity of the manner in which Mr Nxasana vacated office."
8. "Effectively, although Mr Nxasana strongly protested his fitness for office, he was saying he was willing to be bought out of office if the price was right."
9. "The narrative at the beginning of this judgment shows that for a few years there has been instability in the office of NDPP and, therefore, in the leadership of the NPA."
10. "Surely, this unending instability is deleterious not only to the office of NDPP, but also to the NPA as an institution. The sooner it is brought to an end the better. In the circumstances, an order that has the potential of prolonging the instability cannot be just and equitable."