Mpofu should be investigated for allegedly threatening an MP: DA, FF+

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The Democratic Alliance (DA) and the Freedom Front Plus (FF+) say Advocate Dali Mpofu who represents suspended Public Protector Advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane in the parliamentary inquiry should be investigated for allegedly threatening a member of parliament for discharging his duties.

This follows a heated exchange between Mpofu and the Inquiry chairperson Richard Dyantyi on Tuesday.

DA’s MP Annelie Lotriet says, “In terms of Powers, Privileges and Immunities Act no member of parliament may be threatened to exercise his or her duty, so could we please place that on record and could we also investigate the matter.”

FF+ Chief Whip Dr Corne Mulder says, “It is absolutely unheard of what Mr Mpofu has just did. He threatens you as the chairperson of a parliamentary committee. He is an officer of the high court, he should know better and I want this investigated in terms of the powers and privileges act and take the necessary steps.”

Cleo Mosana

In August, Mkhwebane allegedly instructed that former spokesperson Cleo Mosana should be removed from her Private Office for not doing her work and for calling Mkhwebane by her first name, Busisiwe.

This was revealed at the Section 194 Parliamentary Inquiry into Mkhwebane’s fitness to hold office when Acting Head of Corporate Services and Human Resource Manager in the Office of the Public Protector Gumbi Tyelela was testifying.

However, Tyelela faced intense questions from ANC MP Sahlulele Luzipo on the matter. Luzipo wanted to know what Tyelela did as an HR practitioner to refuse an instruction that may have been irregular if there was such an instruction.

He also wanted to know if such an instruction was given in writing. Luzipo says as an HR practitioner, Tyelela’s responsibility is to follow the HR rules. Tyelela was quizzed by MPs after cross examination from Mkhwebane’s  legal representative Dali Mpofu.

During his testimony, it was revealed that Mosana, who has since resigned, was demoted. At the centre of human resource concerns in the PP’s office were allegations of victimisation, intimidation, harassment of staff. This also forms part of the charge in the motion to investigate Mkhwebane for her fitness to hold office.

During clarity-seeking questions, Tyelela’s human resource and labour relations know-how came into question in an interaction with Luzipo.

”Mr Tyelela, can I assume or endorse you as someone who by where you are located is someone who understood to understand to the best of that institution, how labour relations and human resource matters are supposed to unfold,” Luzipo asked Tyelela.

VIDEO: Former CEO in the Office of the Public Protector Vussy Mahlangu is the fifth witness to take the stand in the Section 194 Inquiry: