I treat all cases equally: Protector

By Drum Digital
24 April 2012

Public Protector Thuli Madonsela gives equal treatment to every case she receives regardless of where it comes from, she told a radio station on Tuesday.

"We don't treat any complaints from any organisation with preference. I will be writing to the [Higher Education] Minister [Blade Nzimande] asking for evidence," she said on 567 CapeTalk.

She was responding to a comment by Nzimande last week that she was selective and gave preference to cases involving ministers.

He reportedly claimed she was being used by opposition forces and "Polokwane grievers" trying to run the country "from the grave".

"I just want to say I have a lot of respect for the minister. I don't think he would violate section 181(3) of the Constitution deliberately by undermining an institution based on democracy," she said.

Section 181 made provision for the Public Protector, with part three stating other organs of state should assist and protect such institutions.

Nzimande raised the question as to why Madonsela had managed to respond so quickly to claims of corruption levelled at crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli when she had been sitting on a SA Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) complaint from February 2010.

Madonsela said the SABC case was complex.

"We had an original complaint regarding management. As we are investigating, other issues are creeping in... which we then piled on the existing complaint."

She told the radio station her office did not have sufficient investigating capacity to deal with everything at once.

SABC staff had approached Madonsela twice to investigate maladministration claims, first against acting chief operating officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng and then against chief executive officer Lulama Mokhobo.

Madonsela rubbished the claim she was favouring the Democratic Alliance (DA).

She said she was considering releasing the statistics showing the number of cases launched by the DA, the African National Congress and the public.

The statistics would show she resolved cases across the board.

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