9 August 2019
The country’s anti-corruption watchdog instructed President Cyril Ramaphosa (in picture) to take unspecified disciplinary action against public enterprises minister Gordhan for establishing an investigative unit while serving as tax commissioner. Public Protector, Busisiwe Mkhwebane, head of the anti-corruption watchdog, gave Ramaphosa 30 days to decide on appropriate disciplinary action.
Ramaphosa secured an interdict from the court, meaning he does not have to implement disciplinary action against Gordhan while Gordhan appeals against a finding by Public Protector.
High Court judge Letty Molopa-Sethosa gave the ruling as required by the president. Judge found that the president had acted reasonably in not immediately disciplining Pravin Gordhan over a decision regarding the retirement of a tax official.
The president’s supporters say, that by targeting Ramaphosa and Gordhan, Mkhwebane is acting as a proxy for a faction in the ruling African National Congress party that is aligned with former president Jacob Zuma and opposes Ramaphosa’s rule. Mkhwebane was appointed by Jacob Zuma while he was the president. She and the party Economic Freedom Fighters are set to disrupt the government of Ramaphosa.
Mkhwebane has also charged that Ramaphosa deliberately misled parliament over a 2017 donation to his campaign for the governing African National Congress party.
Anti-corruption pressure group Accountability Now has lodged with the police criminal charges of perjury and defeating the ends of justice against public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane and, at the same time, it has lodged a maladministration complaint against her with the very office she heads.

The statement from Accountability Now said that as she cannot investigate herself, the maladministration complaint will have to be investigated by her deputy, Kevin Malunga.
Three of the public protector’s reports which have been set aside by the South African courts are:
(1) In May 2019, the North Gauteng High Court ruled that Mkhwebane’s Vrede Dairy Farm report be set aside and declared unlawful, unconstitutional and invalid. In its scathing judgment, Judge Ronel Tomal said the public protector had failed in her duties under the Public Protection Act and the Constitution.
(2) In February last year, Mkhwebane’s controversial CIEX (SARB Lifeboat) report was set aside by the High Court in Pretoria which ordered that she pay 15% of the legal bill to the South African Reserve Bank from her own pocket, with the remaining 85% to be paid by her by her office.
(3) On Monday, the Constitutional Court dealt Mkhwebane a major blow when it upheld the North Gauteng High Court’s decision and ordered that she pay the 15% punitive personal cost order as directed by the court. The amount is estimated at almost R900 000, according to reports. A majority judgment of the highest court in the land found that Mkhwebane had not acted in good faith, lied under oath, had a flawed investigative model and was dishonest.

News24 reported.