Call for proof of pro­tec­tor’s in­com­pe­tence

The Mercury - - NEWS - Siyabonga Mkhwanazi

THE ANC in Par­lia­ment has called for ev­i­dence to back up claims that Public Pro­tec­tor Bu­sisiwe Mkhwe­bane is in­ca­pable of do­ing her job and needs to be re­moved from office.

This fol­lows the de­ci­sion of the port­fo­lio com­mit­tee on jus­tice and cor­rec­tional ser­vices to not im­me­di­ately sup­port the call by op­po­si­tion par­ties to axe Mkhwe­bane.

ANC chief whip Jack­son Mthembu said yes­ter­day they needed ev­i­dence that would jus­tify the calls for Mkhwe­bane’s re­moval.

He said the ANC would not go against the act that created the Office of the Public Pro­tec­tor when it came to her re­moval.

“Any­one who says the public pro­tec­tor is not fit to hold office must prove that to us,” he said.

He added that the con­sti­tu­tion and the Public Pro­tec­tor Act created the safe­guards that would lead to her re­moval if she failed to do her job prop­erly. He said the fact that some of her re­ports had been re­viewed un­favourably by the courts did not mean she was not fit to hold office.

“A re­view of a call by the public pro­tec­tor does not make her un­fit for office. We will sup­port any proven ev­i­dence, not­with­stand­ing the safe­guards, but you must prove in­com­pe­tence,” said Mthembu.

In Par­lia­ment this week the DA, EFF and ACDP called for the port­fo­lio com­mit­tee on jus­tice and cor­rec­tional ser­vices to in­sti­tute an in­quiry into Mkhwe­bane’s fit­ness to hold office.

This came after court judg­ments that were scathing of her, as well as the re­ports that have been ques­tioned.

Mkhwe­bane lost the court bat­tle on the Absa/Bankorp lifeboat re­port. She is ap­peal­ing it in the Supreme Court of Ap­peal.

But the DA said she was not ap­peal­ing the en­tire judg­ment, just the sec­tions deal­ing with the cost order against her.

The com­mit­tee de­cided that it would al­low Mkhwe­bane to re­spond to the sub­mis­sion made by DA chief whip John Steen­huisen for her to be axed.

At the same brief­ing in Par­lia­ment, Mthembu de­nied that the ANC was fol­low­ing the EFF in the pro­gramme of the na­tional leg­is­la­ture. This came after the ANC amended the EFF mo­tion three months ago on the ex­pro­pri­a­tion of land with­out com­pen­sa­tion.

“There are many laws we passed in the Na­tional As­sem­bly that the EFF did not sup­port. How on earth are we tail­ing the EFF?” asked Mthembu.

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