Kholeka Gcaleka unfit to serve as PP – Glynnis Breytenbach

DA MP says her previous public positions and actions have raised red flags that should not be ignored

Kholeka Gcaleka unfit to serve as Public Protector

19 October 2023

Today, the National Assembly voted to recommend Adv. Kholeka Gcaleka as the next Public Protector. While unfit for the Office, she will now be tasked with defending our Constitutional Democracy for the next 7 years. Her previous public positions and actions have raised red flags that should not be ignored.

The Democratic Alliance has been unequivocal in its view that the process to appoint a new Public Protector must be reopened, as all shortlisted candidates were unsuitable. The Office of the Public Protector has suffered immense damage under predecessor, Adv. Busisiwe Mkhwebane, and no longer meets its envisioned integrity.

The Public Protector, as a Chapter 9 Institution, is tasked with defending our Constitution from misconduct within the State. It was envisaged to protect our Republic from the very kinds of mafia behaviour that have become our reality for more than a decade. We have seen the NPA and Investigative Directorates deliberately targeted by criminal, self-serving politicians, which have undermined justice to South Africans.

The Public Protector is meant to be a firm, independent voice in the midst such efforts, yet Adv. Gcaleka has demonstrated her political biases, as well as her inexperience in litigation and prosecution. She is unfit for the battles that will be before her, as those that captured our State will seek to do so again.

Adv. Mkhwebane was meant to be a sobering reminder of what can happen when a Public Protector is unfit to serve. History will repeat itself, and the Democratic Alliance will again be on the right side.

It is our duty, as the official opposition, to safeguard the integrity of key institutions, including the Office of the Public Protector. We will continue to closely monitor Adv. Gcaleka's tenure as Public Protector and remain committed to ensuring that the office fulfils its constitutional mandate, free from any doubts regarding its independence and integrity.

Issued by Glynnis Breytenbach, DA Shadow Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development, 19 October 2023