In a ruling that will intensify calls for her removal, the high court in Pretoria found that public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane "failed the people of this country" by turning a blind eye to irregularities in the Gupta-linked Estina Dairy farm scam.

In the most scathing ruling so far against Mkhwebane, judge Ronel Tolmay said her conduct constituted gross negligence and was "far worse and more lamentable" than her discredited investigation of the SA Reserve Bank’s apartheid-era loan to Bankorp, now part of Absa.

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, Morningstar financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Times Select.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00.