The Economic Freedom Fighter (EFF) says it will appeal the recent High Court judgment against Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane at the Constitutional Court.
The High Court in Pretoria on Tuesday set aside and declared unlawful Mkhwebane’s report on funding to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s 2017 African National Congress (ANC) presidential campaign.
The case was brought by Ramaphosa for a judicial review of Mkhwebane’s report.
A full bench of judges ruled that Mkhwebane acted recklessly and irrationally. The judges said she had no jurisdiction to investigate the CR17 campaign and found that Ramaphosa was not obliged to disclose campaign funding, and did not mislead Parliament on the matter.
Mkhwebane was also ordered to pay the legal costs for Ramaphosa, the NPA and Parliament.
EFF spokesperson Delisile Ngwenya says Ramaphosa failed in his constitutional duty to declare the funding.
Ngwenya says, “It is very unfair and it is very disheartening to see the Gauteng North High Court absolved Ramaphosa on a case like this. Ramaphosa is a member of Parliament who has taken an oath that he will declare every gift in the form of money or anything that comes to him for his personal gain.”
“For the court to say that the money that was given to Ramaphosa for his CR17 campaign did not benefit him in his personal capacity it is not true, it is misleading the country,” says Ngwenya.
In the video below, analysts discuss how Ramaphosa vs Mkhwebane may be used in factional battles
In her report, Mkhwebane had found that Ramaphosa had misled Parliament‚ violated the executive ethics code and acted inconsistently with his office in relation to R500 000 donated in 2017, by the late Bosasa boss Gavin Watson to Ramaphosa’s ANC Presidential (CR17) campaign.
Mkhwebane also found prima facie evidence of money laundering in the more than R400-million donated to the campaign. The main pillars of Ramaphosa’s defence are that he did not know about the R500 000 donation, and that Mkhwebane does not have jurisdiction to investigate donations made to a private political campaign.
In the video below, political parties react to the court ruling against Mkhwebane.
Reactions and Comments from the public on Twitter
Winner of the day is PP Advocate Mkhwebane, she exposed the captured judiciary, media, politicians and how the president can be bought, Cyril might have won this round but the battle is far from being over. #CR17
— Banele (@Gentlements) March 10, 2020
Without knowing the facts of the case I know Cyril Ramaphosa will win. But if the PP was Thuli Madonsela against Pres Jacob Zuma same facts in question Thuli Madonsela would have won. I feel sorrry for Advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane she’s being bullied by the Cyril and Jamnandas
— Lerato Pillay (@uLerato_pillay) March 10, 2020
The problem with the #CR17 issue is that it has Mkhwebane at its heart who I have often described as unstrategic& lacking legal nuance. That’s her. But the court’s approach to what benefit means is minimalistic and quite dangerous for building a political accountability framework
— Lukhona (@LukhonaMnguni) March 10, 2020
Let’s shift the spotlight to those who appointed Mkhwebane. What did they see in her against other contestants? What was the overriding “trait” that she apparently possessed, resulting in her being appointed. This story remains untold.
— Khulani Qoma (@KhulaniQoma) March 10, 2020