The Section 194 Inquiry into the fitness of suspended Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane to hold office, has adopted its final report recommending her removal.
The report will now be sent to the National Assembly for adoption. It will require the support of at least two-thirds of members of the assembly and once adopted, the president will be obliged to remove her.
The vast majority of members who took part, voted in favour of adopting the report, excluding Al Jama’ ah, the African Transformation Movement (ATM) and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF).
After months of ignoring various deadlines by the committee to respond to questions or give other inputs, Mkhwebane wrote to them, using a new firm of attorneys, to try and get them to postpone their final decision.
New attorneys Motsoeneneng Bill Attorneys Incorporated told the committee in a letter on Sunday that they hoped to meet with the PP within 72 hours.
They would then approach the committee’s evidence leaders and her previous attorneys to obtain documents. Without giving any suggestion of how long they would take, they suggested that the deadline of August 21 that she had been given would have to fall away.
The committee concluded that there was no way they could be delayed any further.
African National Congress (ANC) MP Doris Dlakude says, “The suspended PP was given enough time to get legal representation.”
The majority of the parties concluded that the committee has bent over backwards to give the Public Protector all the support she needed to participate fully in the inquiry. This includes involving themselves in securing her legal representation when this was not part of their mandate.
Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) MP Zandile Majozi says, “We can’t play with the mandate that we have been given and these delaying tactics have been there and they’re delaying us and I think the committee has been fair to provide PP every option and every legal help that was provided.”
EFF MP Omphile Maotwe questioned what she said was the haste with which the committee wanted to conclude the process.
“The legal rep is now here, Motsoeneng attorneys. They are saying to you and all of us, give us some time to go through the correspondence, in haste they have closed this matter and disregard everything else that is before us.”
ATM President Vuyo Zungula also described the process as unfair and irrational.
VIDEO: Adoption of the Section 194 Committee’s final report:
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