Finance Minister Tito Mboweni has called on Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane “to fall on her sword” following Tuesday’s damaging court ruling against her.
The Pretoria high court made scathing comments about Mkhwebane while setting aside her report on donations into President Cyril Ramaphosa’s CR17 campaign.
It said Mkhwebane had displayed a “deep-seated inability, or refusal, to process facts before her in a logical and fair-minded manner.”
‘Game over’ for Public Protector
The court further said Mkwebane “showed a complete lack of basic knowledge of the law and its application” and displayed “anything but an open mind” in arriving at some of her findings.
In a tweet later on Tuesday, Mboweni wrote, “In a democracy such as ours, the Public Protector should fall on her sword. Game over!!”
Mboweni’s tweet sparked intense debate among his followers, including Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema.
He disagreed with the Minister and replied, “It will not happen without a fight, not a promise but a commitment.”
‘Mkhwebane is going nowhere’
EFF Deputy President Floyd Shivambu also quoted Mboweni’s tweet and said, “Well that, unfortunately, will not happen!
“The @PublicProtector is not going anywhere and will not fall on any sword for exposing callous and greedy capitalists who bought a president to manage their common affairs.”
EFF MP Dr Mbuyiseni Ndlozi also posted several tweets on the matter. He wrote, “I can tell you now… Busisiwe Mkhwebane is going nowhere!”
Meanwhile, Sibongile Besani, who is Ramaphosa’s head of office at the African National Congress (ANC) headquarters, echoed Mboweni’s comments in an interview with News24.
He said, “The Office of the Public Protector and its image has been terribly damaged, which speaks to her capabilities. This judgment shows that the good image of the office has been tainted. The facts are there to demonstrate that view.”
ANC Veterans’ League president Snuki Zikalala also said, “It’s a damaging ruling and she has damaged the integrity and dignity of that office. It’s clear that she is not fit to run that office and the courts have proved that she is not fair and impartial.”
Speaker of Parliament Thandi Modise has approved Democratic Alliance’s motion to remove Mkhwebane from office. However, Mkhwebane is challenging the decision in court.