Mkhwebane dismisses inquiry committee rules as flawed, won’t bother to meet deadlines

File photo of Suspended Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)

File photo of Suspended Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Jul 13, 2023


Cape Town - Suspended Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane says the procedures of the Section 194 committee probing her fitness to hold office are flawed and as such there is no reason for her to meet its deadlines.

Speaking in a Twitter space hosted on her Twitter profile, Mkhwebane said committee chairperson Qubudile Dyantyi’s remarks about her failure to meet deadlines were just a cover for the committee’s real intention, which was to finish the process without her.

“This was the intention of the committee, or whoever is behind this, to finalise the work of the committee and just possibly treat me the way they treated the former president (Jacob Zuma) when he said to (Chief Justice Raymond) Zondo: You must recuse yourself.

“When that never happened, they continued, they even ended up jailing him. So I think he’s just continuing to confuse the public that I’m missing deadlines.”

Mkhwebane said the committee was violating its own rules as it had not consulted her before amending its directives to change certain processes in a bid to hasten its work.

She said when the amended directives were announced she had no legal representation: “The current status now is that I haven’t missed any deadlines.”

Mkhwebane was speaking following Dyantyi’s accusation last Friday that she was deliberately trying to stall the committee’s work by missing crucial deadlines with regard to responding to written questions posed by the committee’s members and evidence leaders.

On Tuesday, Dyantyi again pointed out another missed deadline.

He said Mkhwebane had not indicated whether she would be making any final closing arguments pertaining to the allegations in the motion before the committee.

Mkhwebane’s term ends in October and already the process to recruit a replacement has begun.

Yesterday, the ad hoc committee to nominate her successor said it had received 53 nominations and 17 applications for suitable candidates for appointment as the new Public Protector.

Ad hoc committee chairperson Cyril Xaba (ANC) said that of the 53 nominations, 32 were disqualified during the initial sifting process for non-compliance with the nomination requirements.

Candidates, including Chief Justice Raymond Zondo and ad hoc committee member Glynnis Breytenbach (DA) were nominated without their knowledge.

The committee said nominators had to inform the nominees about their nomination, ask them to accept it and to provide the required documentation such as CV and acceptance forms.

Candidates will be shortlisted on July 26 for interviews which will be held from August 21 to 25 followed by the recommendation of suitable names to Parliament.

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Cape Argus