Parliament could pursue public protector
Cape Town - Parliament is forging ahead with formulating rules that will be used to remove Public Protector advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane or other heads of Chapter 9 institutions in the future.
On Tuesday the rules committee is expected to consider the legislation after the justice and correctional services portfolio committee submitted the request to National Assembly Speaker Thandi Modise.
In a move to speed up the process, the DA has submitted its draft rules to Modise.
Modise has since confirmed receiving proposals from the opposition party’s chief whip John Steenhuisen, adding that parliament has agreed to consult with Steenhuisen's office to look at that process. “We are also anxious to get it dealt with as quickly as possible,” Modise said.
In May, Steenhuisen asked Modise to begin the process to remove Mkhwebane after the North Gauteng High Court set aside her report into the Vrede dairy project.
But Mkhwebane has since threatened legal action if Parliament continues with the process to remove her.
In a letter to Modise, Steenhuisen said the DA’s draft proposals were modelled on those adopted for the removal of the president.
“The DA believes that Parliament should move on this matter with an appropriate sense of urgency,” he said.
The DA has also proposed that a committee be established to consider motions for the removal of the Public Protector, the Auditor-General or member of a Chapter Nine institution.
They propose that the committee consists of parliamentarians and that half of its members be members from opposition parties represented in the Assembly.
“The Committee must proceed with the enquiry and establish the veracity and seriousness of the charges and report to the Assembly thereon,” reads the draft rule.
The DA also recommended that the committee could, at its own discretion, ask the Speaker to appoint an independent panel to conduct a preliminary enquiry and to report.