National Assembly Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula has written to President Cyril Ramaphosa informing him about Parliament’s intention to proceed with impeachment proceedings against Public Protector Advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane.
This follows the recent decision of the Constitutional Court which paved the way for Parliament to proceed with its inquiry into the fitness of Mkhwebane to hold office.
In terms of the Constitution, the President may suspend Mkhwebane pending the outcome of the inquiry.
Advocate Mkwebane has filed a rescission application to the highest Court in the land, to halt parliament’s impeachment process against her.
In her 25 page affidavit, she highlights what she says are key errors that the Constitutional court made when it ruled against her. She further raises a concern that should the judgment not be corrected, it may lead to her suspension by President.
It’s a fight for survival for the public protector, Advocate Busisiwe Mkwebane. She has applied to the Constitutional Court to have the process of her impeachment as a head of a Chapter Nine institution reversed. This is the second rescission application she has made to the apex court, requesting it to reverse its own judgments. The other relates to her findings about R500 000 donations to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s 2017 presidential campaign.
Mkhewebane’s application comes after a judgment handed down by the apex court on the 4th of February, on an application brought by the Speaker of Parliament and the Democratic Alliance against the Public Protector to the Cape Town High Court.
The ConCourt deliberated on the challenge to the legality of the Rules drafted by parliament to impeach the head of a Chapter 9 institution and found that such rules are constitutional. Mkwebane says that the ConCourt judgment is ambiguous and contains patent errors and omissions. These include her contention that the court incorrectly found that the separation of powers doctrine is not breached by allowing a judge to sit on a panel adjudicating a Chapter 9 institution office-bearer’s suitability to hold office.
Another omission she asserts is the apex court’s failure to consider her argument that the Democratic Alliance (DA) as one of the applicants in the original case has acted in bad faith, reflected in its hostile attitude towards her appointment and in the various court cases it has brought against her. Meanwhile, her office says she cannot comment on the matter as it is sub judice.
DA reacts to the news: Siviwe Gwarube