The Democratic Alliance (DA) has received a letter from the Speaker of the National Assembly, Ms Thandi Modise, confirming that our request to institute removal proceedings against the Public Protector, Busisiwe Mkhwebane, will be referred to the portfolio committee on Justice and Correctional Services for consideration.
This request should be one of the first items on the committee’s agenda once it had been constituted and a chairperson elected.
Our initial complaint followed on a North Gauteng High Court judgment that set aside Mkhwebane’s report into the Vrede Dairy Farm, finding it unconstitutional and invalid.
Our complaint also alleged that:
- She jumped to the defence of former President Jacob Zuma by laying criminal charges against former Public Protector, Advocate Thuli Madonsela, for releasing the transcript of her interview with him;
- She admitted to stepping outside of her mandate by recommending changing the Constitution regarding the mandate of the South African Reserve Bank; and
- She first consulted former President Zuma’s legal advisors and discussed further recommendations not included in her initial report into the ABSA/Bankorp bailout.
- Since then, media reports have brought to light more questionable judgments, including reports this morning that Mkhwebane gave everyone involved in the R 39 million Nelson Mandela memorial service corruption allegations as “free pass”, including former first lady Nompumelelo Ntuli-Zuma.
The DA also took note of a press release by the Public Servants Association (PSA) this week, alleging that the Mkhwebane’s office was making use of the State Security Agency (SSA) to victimize and harass PSA shop stewards.
The DA will write to the Speaker requesting that this additional information also be referred to the portfolio committee, and that the committee should hear evidence from the PSA on the potential abuse of her office by Mkhwebane.
We have long stated that Mkhwebane is not the right person to serve as the head of such a critical Chapter 9 body.
It is for this reason the DA has submitted another request to the Speaker of the National Assembly in terms of Section 194 of the Constitution, to have the Public Protector removed. She has demonstrated an appallingly poor understanding of both the law as well as of her own powers and has proven that she is not able to act independently.
However, for as long as Adv. Mkhwebane occupies the office of the Public Protector, we will call on her to do her job. Therefore this process must not prejudice the DA-initiated investigation against President Ramaphosa.
The DA strives to create a society in which the public is adequately protected from state abuses by Chapter 9 institutions and other role players. It is in the best interest of all that Mkhwebane be removed from office.
Issued by The DA