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Public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane. Picture: THAPELO MOREBUDI
Public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane. Picture: THAPELO MOREBUDI

Public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane on Thursday said she had been notified of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s intention to suspend her.

Mkhwebane said in a statement that she had received a letter from Ramaphosa, confirming news reports that he was considering placing her on suspension after he had received a letter from the speaker of the National Assembly, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, calling for the impeachment process against her to be rolled out.

“This afternoon [Mkhwebane] received a letter from the president confirming the news reports and informing her that he is considering suspending her in terms of section 194(3)(a). The letter further invites the public protector to, within 10 working days, provide reasons why the president should not take such a step,” read a statement from Mkhwebane’s office.

“Though the president’s letter makes reference to the correspondence from the speaker and purports to attach it, no such letter was actually attached, suggesting a rushed process. The public protector will on Friday request a copy of the letter in question from the president,” Mkhwebane’s office said.

She called for Ramaphosa to be fair on her and said she would be seeking legal advice.

“Contrary to the prevailing narrative, all she has ever asked for is a fair section 194 process. To that end, she will be consulting with her legal team first thing tomorrow morning (Friday 18 March 2022) to map the way forward. In the meantime, no further public statements will be made on this matter given its obviously legal nature,” said Mkhwebane’s office.