South Africa could know the name of the new Public Protector by Tuesday, after members of the National Assembly’s ad hoc committee concluded the process to interview eight candidates.
Chairperson of the ad hoc committee on the appointment of the public protector, Cyril Xaba said they will reconvene on Tuesday to pick one person to take over as Public Protector.
The term of the current Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane ends in October. But she was impeached in parliament, and that process has been concluded after she was found guilty of misconduct and the section 194 committee recommended that Mkhwebane must be removed from office.
But in the process to select the next Public Protector, Xaba’s committee interviewed eight candidates. including acting Public Protector Kholeka Gcaleka, former South Africa Human Rights Commission CEO Tseliso Thipanyane, Pension Funds adjudicator Muvhango Lukhaimane and magistrate Johanna Ledwaba.
The other candidates to be interviewed by parliamentarians were advocates Oliver Josie, Kwena Thomas Ntsewa, Lynn Marais and Professor Boitumelo Mmusinyane.
Xaba said after the process was finalised by the committee on Thursday they will meet on Tuesday to pick one name. He said he was certain the committee will choose the strongest candidate for the position.
The successful candidate will be recommended to the National Assembly, and a report tabled on Thursday for the House to approve the name.
“I am confident that with the eight candidates interviewed, the committee would be in a position to recommend the strongest possible candidate for the position,” said Xaba.
Gcaleka had faced opposition from the EFF, which had wanted her to be excluded from the process because of her alleged bias in the Phala Phala matters.
But this was refused by members of the ad hoc committee.
When she appeared before the committee Gcaleka was grilled about her report on Phala Phala.
She said she stands by her findings, given the complexity of the investigation. She also said it was not out of the ordinary that the investigation took a year to finalise.