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Public Protector kicks off defence in impeachment inquiry

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s lawyer Dali Mpofu said that nothing she’s done in the course of her work was an impeachable offence.

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane in the Western Cape High Court on 25 October 2022. Picture: Lindsay Dentlinger/Eyewitness News

CAPE TOWN – Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s lawyer Dali Mpofu said that nothing she’s done in the course of her work was an impeachable offence.

He made his opening remarks to the parliamentary impeachment inquiry, outlining his strategy for NAIJAONPOINT es he intended to call in Mkwhebane’s defence.

But he indicated that several of NAIJAONPOINT es approached appeared reluctant to testify voluntarily.

Mpofu said that despite what the inquiry has heard to date, Mkhwebane was always acting within the remit of her job.

“Bottom line, as with all the other charges that whatever conduct the Public Protector was involved in, was not an impeachable offence by any stretch of the imagination.”

Mpofu told the Section 194 committee that the approach he would adopt to disprove the charges Mkhwebane was facing would largely depend on NAIJAONPOINT es who heeded the call to appear.

He said that Democratic Alliance (DA) MP Natasha Mazzone, who initiated the motion for the inquiry, was among those who had not responded favourably.

“She declines to give evidence voluntarily, so I just wanted to confirm that it’s the voluntary that I wanted to emphasise which now means we are now in the land of subpoena.”

Mpofu said that Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan would inform the Public Protector’s legal team by Monday whether he would testify voluntarily, or not.

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