Durban - Three weeks after launching a fundraising drive to raise R900 000 in order to pay for Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s legal costs, the drive had netted R107 000 by Saturday.
The fundraising campaign got another boost when it was allowed to solicit donations using Thundafunda, a leading South African crowdfunding platform for innovation and the creative economy. The platform allows people to donate anonymously.
According to Thabo Mtsweni, the chairperson of Democracy in Action, the civic organisation driving the fundraising campaign, they are on track to raising the R900 000 within the next three months.
“By yesterday (Saturday) when we checked we had raised about R107 000,” Mtsweni said.
The costs were personally levied on Mkhwebane by the Constitutional Court last month after it agreed with a North Gauteng High Court ruling that she did not do an honourable investigation in the Absa-Bankorp apartheid era bailout matter.
In the ruling that was later overturned, Mkhwebane had ordered the banking giant to repay R1.1 billion that was given to a struggling Bankorp, an apartheid era bank it later snatched for a song.
“We are happy with the way the donations are coming so far when you consider that in three weeks we have managed to raise over R100 000. We are hopefully that we will reach the R900 000 target within three months,” Mtsweni said.
He added that what they found humbling was the fact that the donations came mainly from ordinary South Africans, with the highest ever received donation being R4000.
Launching the fundraising drive, the civic organisation said the Constitutional Court ruling was unfortunate and set a wrong precedent for chapter 9 institutions and other Public Protectors to come after her, this means that they will not be able to do their job without fear anymore.