IT IS unclear if those who abused state organs to pursue a case against African National Congress (ANC) president Jacob Zuma will be held to account.

Former National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) head Bulelani Ngcuka, former Scorpions boss Leonard McCarthy and businessman Mzi Khumalo are accused of manipulating the legal processes which led to Zuma being charged with corruption in December 2007.

Former president Thabo Mbeki could be implicated by virtue of Ngcuka and McCarthy having acted in his name.

While the National Intelligence Agency did not respond to questions about whether it had reported taped telephone conversations between Ngcuka, McCarthy and Khumalo to Mbeki (the then head of state), the NPA said it was still compiling a report for Justice Minister Enver Surty.

The minister's office refused to comment on the controversy yesterday.

While Zuma's legal wrangles with the NPA have dominated the political landscape for almost a decade, evidence of how his political enemies manipulated legal processes have raised new questions around the legitimacy of the organs of state.

Ngcuka denied being party to any conspiracy against Zuma yesterday, but would not comment on the taped conversations, saying he had not heard or authenticated them.

"It would be untenable to a make any statement in response to allegations arising from what are selective transcripts of recordings," he said.

Meanwhile, the World Bank defended McCarthy, saying that before he was appointed vice-president of integrity it had conducted extensive due diligence on him and that the bank was aware that there were claims and counter-claims being made "in a very heated political environment".

"We are continuing to closely track the situation there, where we understand the matter is being referred to the justice department for further assessment," the World Bank said.

The Independent Democrats laid charges against McCarthy and Ngcuka with the police yesterday.

omarjee@bdfm.co.za