President Cyril Ramaphosa has invited a number of legal organisations and independent public institutions to help him identify and select individuals for consideration as possible candidates for the position of national director of public prosecutions (NDPP), the presidency said on Sunday.

The panel would be chaired by Energy Minister Jeff Radebe and would be requested to identify potential candidates, establish that they meet the required criteria, conduct interviews with potential candidates, and recommend at least three candidates to the president, Ramaphosa’s spokesperson Khusela Diko said in a statement.

While the panel would make recommendations, the Constitution prescribed that ultimately only the president could appoint the NDPP. Ramaphosa would do this after consultation with Justice and Correctional Services Minister Michael Masutha, Diko said.

The organisations invited to provide a representative were the General Council of the Bar of South Africa; the Law Society of South Africa; the Black Lawyers Association; the National Association of Democratic Lawyers; Advocates for Transformation; the Auditor General of South Africa; and the South African Human Rights Commission.

The panel would be tasked to complete its work and make recommendations to the president to enable him to meet the deadline set by the Constitutional Court to appoint a new NDPP within 90 court days of August 13, Diko said.