Allegations that Public Protector, Adv. Busisiwe Mkhwebane, appears to have altered crucial remedial action in the provisional report prepared by her predecessor, Thuli Madonsela, on the Vrede dairy farm, if true, constitute a serious breach of her oath of office and gross misconduct which would be grounds for dismissal.
The revelation vindicates the DA’s decision to take the report on judicial review.
The DA has already ensured that Adv Mkewebane’s removal be considered by Parliament, with the matter being referred to the Justice Committee on 18 March 2018. The ANC members blocked it then but the process should no longer be delayed.
The DA will write to the Chairperson of the Justice Committee, Mathole Motshekga, and to the House Chairperson, Cedrick Frolick, to request that the Committee revisit the matter urgently.
The allegations relating to the Vrede Dairy Report remain to be fully investigated, but they are simply the latest in a long line of controversies that have plagued Adv. Mkhwebane’s tenure as Public Protector.
Notwithstanding this latest incident, it has been shown time and again that she is neither fit to hold the office of the Public Protector nor capable of acting in an impartial manner as required by the Public Protector Act.
Recently, the decision by the High Court to set aside her Bankorp-CIEX report, in which she recommended that ABSA pay back R1,1 billion, was a damning indictment on her fitness to hold office. She has shown herself as being prone to making dubious decisions such as proposing that the Reserve Bank’s mandate be amended
Parliament cannot afford to keep turning a blind eye to what is clearly an abuse of office by Adv. Mkhwebane. It has only served to erode public trust in the office of the Public Protector.
South Africa deserves an impartial Public Protector who is able to act in the interests of all citizens without fear or favour.