The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) made a U-turn with regards to its original decision not to prosecute the accused in a murder case after AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit assisted the complainant in the case.
The husband of the complainant in the case was shot dead in January 2020 in Richards Bay while she also sustained a bullet wound to her hand.
The complainant and her husband on 26 January observed a commotion in the neighbourhood and went to investigate. The accused fired off a shot that led to the death of the complainant’s husband. The same bullet hit the complainant in her hand. The alleged murderer lived in the same neighbourhood as the victims.
The deceased’s family decided to emigrate to the USA as a result of the incident. The police investigated the crime, but the NPA initially failed to prosecute. This despite the fact that the police investigation concluded that the bullet and used cartridge found on the scene was fired off with a firearm registered in the name of the accused.
AfriForum assisted the complainant by bringing an application for a nolle prosequi certificate, after which the NPA made a U-turn regarding its decision not to prosecute.
“The NPA’s original decision not to prosecute is irrational and unfair. That is why it became of grave importance that there is a counterbalance, such as the Private Prosecution Unit, to ensure that justice prevails and that is prepared to assist the complainants when the NPA refuses to prosecute in cases that have merit,” says Adv. Phyllis Vorster, Prosecutor at AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit.