As beleaguered public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane faces the imminent prospect of a parliamentary inquiry and numerous court challenges involving her fitness to hold office, lawyers for President Cyril Ramaphosa have made it very clear that she does not enjoy the head of state’s trust and confidence.

In court papers filed at the Pretoria high court in the Bosasa matter in late December, the president’s lawyers criticised her investigation of his ANC presidential election campaign funding as "unlawful" and "malicious", driven mostly by a "reckless determination to malign the president".

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