There were high hopes for Shamila Batohi, the new National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP). Yet, after two months in the job, there is no sign of action by her against any significant political figures whose corrupt activities are exposed in the media.
At this rate, she’ll soon be in breach of her oath of office, in which she pledged to “enforce the law of the Republic without fear, favour or prejudice”. Enforcing the law without fear, favour or prejudice should include not being afraid of political consequences of legally sound decisions. Why then are there no charges against Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema and his deputy Floyd Shivambu in the open-and-shut case where VBS Mutual Bank was looted? Why no hint of arrest of Jacob Zuma or any Guptas and their state-capture gang? Even the Ramaphosa family is not free of the Bosasa stench.
The various commissions remind us daily of the crookery that has been going on. Yet media coverage is no substitute for justice. It’s a distraction, creating the impression that something more consequential is happening, while scoundrels walk free.
For some of us, commission fatigue has set in. We want to see arrests, prosecutions and sentencing. Instead, we have more of the same: shocking disclosures but no consequences.
Impunity is reinforced when political parties release their election candidate lists, with suspects in prominent, electable positions.