Justice Minister sets outs plans to fight crime and corruption

The increase in police visibility will cost R1.8 billion
May 30, 2023
Two security guards were detained for possession of firearms
May 31, 2023
The increase in police visibility will cost R1.8 billion
May 30, 2023
Two security guards were detained for possession of firearms
May 31, 2023

Justice Minister sets outs plans to fight crime and corruption

The government is still firmly committed to eliminating crime, fraud, and corruption in the nation,
according to Justice and Constitutional Development Minister Ronald Lamola, who was speaking at
the budget vote in parliament on May 31. Lamola said a sizable portion of the department’s budget
is going to organisations that are directly involved in combating crime, fraud, and corruption in order
“to ensure its success.”


“To combat crime, fraud and corruption, the National Prosecution Authority’s overall allocation for
2023/24 amounts to R5.4 billion. This amount includes the additional grant of R915 million made by
government to strengthen our efforts in fighting crime and corruption.


“The National Prosecution Authority Investigative Directorate (NPA ID) is allocated a portion of R336
million out of the overall allocation,” he said.


Lamola praised the NPA and the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) for enforcing “accountability for
crime and maladministration”.


“The NPA effectively deals with over 850 000 criminal cases yearly, with over 600 000 in court
dockets. The progress made by the NPA is evident in the numbers. It is encouraging to see that they
are growing from strength to strength. Although there have been some setbacks, they are not
insurmountable, and plans are in place to address them.


“Holding individuals accountable for their actions is essential. The increase in signed proclamations
and civil action instituted in the High Courts and the Special Tribunal is a positive sign. The Special
Investigating Unit (SIU) is also doing a great job investigating allegations of corruption and
maladministration in government departments, municipalities, and State-owned entities,” Lamola
said.


Protecting whistle-blowers
The Minister said in order to further secure the mission of combating corruption, government is
proposing further measures – through new policies and legislative amendments – to protect whistle-
blowers.


“Ensuring the safety and protection of whistle-blowers is crucial to serving justice. Without their
cooperation, obtaining convictions can prove challenging. Therefore, it is imperative to implement
strong measures to safeguard them.


“Extensive research and evaluation of the protected disclosures and witness protection legislation in
South Africa has uncovered gaps and shortcomings in the current system.


“The department conducted a comparative analysis with other jurisdictions to ensure adequate and
effective whistle-blower protection. According to our research, there are better ways to promote
organisational transparency and accountability than incentivising whistle-blowers,” he said.
Lamola said the research paper will be released for public comment in June.


“The research paper includes recommendations such as providing legal assistance to whistle-
blowers, enhancing internal policy oversight, and creating a fund for those experiencing retaliations
with financial implications,” he said.

Greylisting
Turning to financial crimes and South Africa’s greylisting by the international anti-money laundering
group FATF, Lamola said government has introduced laws geared towards enhancing the “capacity to
prosecute financial crimes”.
“The Regulation of Trusts Bill seeks to regulate the establishment of trusts and provide for legislative
measures on par with the current socio-economic, jurisprudential, and practical landscapes in which
trusts are created and operated.
“Additionally, the SIU and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research are collaborating to
enhance the use of technology to fight the scourge of corruption and maladministration in the
country.
“The department is committed to developing partnerships in the public service, the private sector,
professional bodies, media, and international networking to mobilise all sectors to engage in the
fight against corruption.”

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