Parliament started the process of searching for a deputy public protector (DPP) when it called for nominations and applications for the position.
The position became vacant when former incumbent Kholeka Gcaleka was appointed as the Public Protector last year. Gcaleka took over from Busisiwe Mkhwebane, who has since been impeached following an inquiry into her fitness to hold office.
The justice and correctional services portfolio committee last week put out an advertisement calling for nominations and applications.
According to the Constitution, the DPP must be a South African citizen and a “fit and proper person to hold the particular office”.
It provides that the office-bearer must be a person who for 10 years was a judge, practised as or was an admitted advocate or attorney and qualified to be admitted as an advocate or attorney and has lectured in law at a university.
The office-bearer should have specialised knowledge or experience in the administration of justice, public administration or public finance, has been a MP or has any combination of this experience. The portfolio committee said those wishing to apply or make nominations should do so by February 16.
Committee chairperson Bulelani Magwanishe said the DPP was appointed by the president on the recommendation of the National Assembly for a period not exceeding seven years.
Magwanishe also said the DPP may at the end of his or her term be reappointed for one additional term. The position comes with an annual salary of R1 924 542.
However, the office-bearer may be removed from office on grounds of misconduct, incapacity or incompetence as well as a finding by the committee and adoption of resolution by the National Assembly adopted by a majority of MPs.
The president may suspend the DPP after any complaint has been received by the National Assembly if he deemed the complaint was of a serious nature to make it inappropriate for him or her to perform functions while investigated.
Magwanishe said a list of all the nominations and applications received would be published in order to allow members of the public to comment on the suitability of candidates.
“The shortlisted candidates will be subjected to a screening process,” he said.