National Prosecuting Authority Act

AN ACT to establish the National Prosecuting Authority Board and to provide for its functions; to provide for the appointment the National Director of Public Prosecutions; to provide for the administration of the National Prosecuting Authority and the conditions of service of its members; to provide for the transfer of persons from the Civil Service to the National Prosecuting Authority; and to provide for matters connected with or incidental to the foregoing.

 

WHEREAS sections 258, 259, 260, 261, 262 and 263 of the Constitution provide as follows:

258 Establishment and functions of National Prosecuting Authority

            There is a National Prosecuting Authority which is responsible for instituting and undertaking criminal prosecutions on behalf of the State and discharging any functions that are necessary or incidental to such prosecutions.

259 Prosecutor-General and other officers

(1) There is a Prosecutor-General who is the head of the National Prosecuting Authority.

(2) The office of the Prosecutor-General is a public office but does not form part of the Civil Service.

(3) The Prosecutor-General is appointed by the President on the advice of the Judicial Service Commission following the procedure for the appointment of a judge.

(4) The Prosecutor-General must be a person qualified for appointment as a judge of the Supreme Court.

(5) The term of office of the Prosecutor-General is a period of six years and is renewable for one further such term.

(6) Before taking office, the Prosecutor-General must take, before the President or a person authorised by the President, the oath of office in the form set out in the Third Schedule.

(7) The provisions relating to the removal of a judge from office apply to the removal of the Prosecutor-General from office.

(8) The conditions of service of the Prosecutor-General, including his or her remuneration, must be provided for in an Act of Parliament, but the remuneration must not be reduced during the Prosecutor-General’s tenure of office.

(9) The remuneration of the Prosecutor-General is a charge on the Consolidated Revenue Fund.

(10) An Act of Parliament must provide for the appointment of a board to employ persons to assist the Prosecutor-General in the exercise of his or her functions, and must also provide—

(a) for the qualifications of those persons;

(b) for the conditions of service, conduct and discipline of those persons;

(c) that in exercising their functions, those persons must be independent and impartial and subject only to the law and to the direction and control of the Prosecutor-General;

(d) for the structure and organisation of the National Prosecuting Authority; and

(e) generally, for the efficient performance and well-being of the National Prosecuting Authority.

(11) The Prosecutor-General may direct the Commissioner-General of Police to investigate and report to him or her on anything which, in the Prosecutor-General’s opinion, relates to an offence or alleged or suspected offence, and the Commissioner-General of Police must comply with that direction.

260  Independence of Prosecutor-General

(1)  Subject to this Constitution, the Prosecutor-General—

(a) is independent and is not subject to the direction or control of anyone; and

(b) must exercise his or her functions impartially and without fear, favour, prejudice or bias.

(2) The Prosecutor-General must formulate and publicly disclose the general principles by which he or she decides whether and how to institute and conduct criminal proceedings.

261 Conduct of officers of National Prosecuting Authority

(1) The Prosecutor-General and officers of the National Prosecuting Authority must act in accordance with this Constitution and the law.

      (2) No officer of the National Prosecuting Authority may, in the exercise of his or her functions—

(a) act in a partisan manner;

(b) further the interests of any political party or cause;

(c) prejudice the lawful interests of any political party or cause; or

(d) violate the fundamental rights or freedoms of any person.

      (3) Officers of the National Prosecuting Authority must not be active members or office bearers of any political party or organisation.

        (4) An Act of Parliament may make further provision to ensure the political neutrality of

officers of the National Prosecuting Authority.

262 Prosecutor-General to report annually to Parliament

The Prosecutor-General must submit to Parliament, through the appropriate Minister, an annual report on the operations and activities of the National Prosecuting Authority, the report being submitted not later than six months after the beginning of the year following the year to which the report relates.

263 Other powers of prosecution

An Act of Parliament may confer powers of prosecution on persons other than the National Prosecuting Authority, but those powers must not limit or conflict with the Authority’s powers under this Part.”

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