Criticism hurting my team’s morale – Thuli Madonsela

2014-09-11 17:15

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The “deafening noise” of criticism against Public Protector Thuli Madonsela has knocked the morale of her team.

“My team, which is disturbed by all the commotion, continues though to go beyond the call of duty to serve the people. The team is doing this under unbelievable capacity constraints and people’s expectations,” she said in Cape Town today.

“Whilst my team is focusing on trying to do its best and even ignoring the capacity constraints, the noise that is taking place is taking a toll on the morale of the team.” She was addressing a stakeholder consultative dialogue at the City of Cape Town’s chambers, one of many across the provinces, titled “Joining hands in a partnership against maladministration and corruption”.

Madonsela has come under increasing attack from various quarters over her powers to investigate organs of State and take remedial action.

Amid these attacks, it was announced this week that the chief executive and chief financial officers in her office had resigned.

CEO Themba Mthethwa’s extended employment contract was to have expired on December 31 but he resigned last month, indicating that he had received a better offer elsewhere.

CFO Dumisani Dlamini, also resigned last month after accepting a better offer elsewhere.

Madonsela confirmed that her Western Cape provincial representative Ruthven Janse van Rensburg had also resigned.

“I don’t think there is a direct relationship between the resignations and what has just happened [with the attacks],” she said.

“However it is affecting staff, in terms of people asking questions of what is going to happen with us and is government unhappy with our work?”

She said her staff were mostly young lawyers – career public servants and patriots – who wanted to feel they were appreciated.

She reflected that there was probably a need to hold a meeting with her staff and assure them that everything was under control and no one was going to be fired.

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