[DEBATE] : Ngoako Ramatlhodi and the Scorpions, COSATU Media Release
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Tue Nov 7 19:17:44 GMT 2006
COSATU Media Release, Tue 2006/11/07 11:33 AM
COSATU notes with concern the continuing Hollywood-style harassment of
former Limpopo Premier and current ANC NEC member, Ngoako Ramatlhodi, by the
Scorpions and National Prosecuting Authority. This second round of raids
follows the reversal the NPA suffered in the courts after an earlier round
of raids on the same people.
COSATU opposes all forms of arbitrary victimisation. The Scorpions/NPA are
continuing to show contempt for due legal process and for court orders. It
is not an agency that respects, or can be trusted to defend, the law. Nobody
is safe when an agency with unlimited powers and resources is running wild
in this way, and refusing any kind of restraint.
COSATU General Secretary Zwelinzima Vavi has described the many victims of
unconcluded Scorpions vendettas as the walking wounded. The Scorpions
habitually announce an investigation, or leak it to the media, and then
carry out raids and further leaks over years, thus blighting the victims
lives and reputations. Their work leaves loose ends, no closure, and no
remedy for the enormous harm they cause.
In the case of Ramatlhodi their action has gone on for three years and has
had the effect of depriving him of his livelihood as a lawyer. When asked
for the status of the investigation that had been hanging over Ramatlhodi
s head for three years, the Scorpions responded with a further vexatious
round of raids. As a result Ramatlhodi is still denied admission as an
advocate, and yet there is no charge against him and therefore no remedy
available to him.
It is intolerable that people are denied the possibility of work in this
way. It is equivalent to punishment without trial. COSATU calls upon Comrade
Ramatlhodis sisters and brothers of the legal profession to come to his aid
collectively, and to see off this menacing, bullying threat to the
independence of their profession.
COSATU repeats its long-standing call for the reintegration of the Scorpions
into the South African Police Service, and a speedy end to the elective
prosecutions-of-choice which have been the sole contribution of the
regrettable Scorpion experiment.
Patrick Craven (National Spokesperson), Congress of South African Trade
1-5 Leyds Cnr Biccard Streets
P.O.Box 1019, Johannesburg, 2000
Tel: +27 11 339-4911/24, Fax: +27 11 339-5080/6940/ 086 603 9667
E-Mail: patrick at cosatu.org.za
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