Police investigating the disappearance of Health Minister Manto
Tshabalala-Msimang’s medical records do not have enough evidence for a
prosecution, writes Borrie la Grange in The Times.

The director of public prosecutions in Western Cape, Rodney de Kock, has handed the theft docket back to the police for further investigation.

Western Cape police chief Mzwandile Petros denied last week that Sunday Times editor Mondli Makhanya and one of the newspaper’s senior journalists, Jocelyn Maker, were to be arrested on charges of being in illegal possession of the minister of health’s medical records.

The Sunday Times reported on October 16 that the two journalists faced arrest.

The battle stems from an exposé that the newspaper ran on August 12.

The article detailed the minister’s allegedly drunken behaviour and abuse of power during her treatment for a shoulder injury in 2005 at the Cape Town Medi-Clinic.

On August 19, the Sunday Times exposed Tshabalala-Msimang’s conviction for theft in Botswana during the 1970s and revealed that she had liver disease caused by years of excessive drinking.

A spokesman for the National Prosecuting Authority, Tlali Tlali, said the returning of a docket to the police by a director of public prosecutions was not unusual. He would not be drawn on the specifics of the additional evidence sought.

He said: “They [the police] will have to look at certain aspects of the investigation.

“Based on the contents of the docket, he [De Kock] could not make a finding on whether to prosecute.

“There was not a reasonable prospect of success based on the evidence, and more work needs to be done.”

Click here to read the full report, posted on the Sunday Times website.