In a further blow to beleaguered public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane, three Pretoria high court judges have rejected her application for leave to appeal against a judgment overruling her report on an early retirement package for former SA Revenue Service (Sars) deputy commissioner Ivan Pillay.

On Wednesday, the judges ordered that Mkhwebane, who has been criticised in various court judgments for her lack of independence and understanding of the law, pay the costs of the application including that of two counsel. They found that there were no reasonable prospects of an appeal against the judgment...

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