DA submits draft rules for the removal of the Public Protector
3 September 2019
The Democratic Alliance (DA) has today written to the Speaker to submit a set of draft rules to guide the conduct of Parliament when it considers the removal of a Head of a Chapter 9 institution, such as the Public Protector.
Last week, the portfolio committee on Justice and Correctional Services met to discuss the DA’s request, dated May 2019, for Parliament to consider the removal of Advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane, the incumbent Public Protector, from office. The committee resolved to refer the matter back to the Speaker’s office so that the Programming and Rules committee may set down rules to guide the process to be followed by Parliament in this matter.
The decision by the committee accords with a legal opinion obtained by the DA that advised this same course of action, in order to ensure legal and procedural certainty to all parties involved and protect the integrity of the process.
The DA considers the removal of Advocate Mkhwebane to be a matter of great urgency. We opposed her appointment from the start, and she has since then demonstrated that she is not a fit and proper person to occupy the office of Public Protector. She has consistently shown herself to be unable to act independently, and her often blatantly unlawful actions has caused great damage not only to the reputation of her office but also to the economic well-being of South Africa and the position of the rule of law in this country.
The DA however also believes that due process should be followed in order to effect Advocate Mkhwebane’s removal. It is to marry the need for urgency with the need for proper rules and procedures to be put in place first that the DA has taken it upon ourselves to submit a set of draft rules to the Speaker, in order to hopefully assist the Programming and Rules committee in the task that lies before it.
The DA believes that South Africans deserve a Public Protector that truly protects the rights and the interests of the public against abuses by the state, and we will not rest in our efforts to ensure that Advocate Mkhwebane is removed and a fit and proper successor installed in her place.
Issued by John Steenhuisen, Chief Whip of the Official Opposition, 3 September 2019