Limpopo man sues Public Protector's office for R350 000 over alleged assault - report

2019-09-08 08:00
Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhebane. Photo: TEBOGO LETSIE

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhebane. Photo: TEBOGO LETSIE

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The Public Protector's office is facing a lawsuit of R350 000 after a Limpopo man claims he was allegedly assaulted at the Polokwane offices when he objected an outcome of his complaint, the Sunday Times reported. 

According to the paper, Nchaube Peter Seabi was allegedly assaulted by then Limpopo provincial head, Hamilton Samuel. The paper reported that Seabi was not happy with the outcome of a complaint he filed with the office in 2009. 

The two men had opened assault charges on each other but the National Prosecuting Authority declined to prosecute either case, Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane's spokesperson, Oupa Segalwe told the Sunday paper. 

READ | Judiciary's position on Public Protector's powers 'radically changed' since I took over - Mkhwebane

Seabi reinstated his complaint after the provincial head was moved to the Free State office. Samuel was subsequently found guilty of common assault, Segalwe said. 

The paper reported that the client was suing the office as well as Samuel in his personal capacity. The office and head would be opposing the lawsuit. No trial date has been set.

READ |  Mkhwebane on allegations that she is targeting Ramaphosa, Gordhan: 'Why should I turn a blind eye' 

News24 reported on Friday that Mkhwebane, speaking at a leadership dialogue at the University of Johannesburg, said the legal position regarding the powers in her office enjoys had "radically changed".

She was speaking on issues related to her office, including challenges she said she had faced. She said the judiciary had changed its position on the powers of her office.

Among other issues which the Public Protector touched on was the infamous Nkandla judgment, where she said: "The Constitutional Court held that the remedial action dispensed by the Public Protector is binding until or unless set aside by a court of law, [further], the Public Protector can direct the manner of implantation of the remedial action, and that compliance was not optional."

Among other woes, the Public Protector's office is a Hawks unit investigation after a complaint was laid by anti-corruption pressure group Accountability Now on Busisiwe Mkhwebane. 

The group has laid criminal charges of perjury and defeating the ends of justice against Mkhwebane on Monday. It also lodged a maladministration complaint against her with the very office she head, News24 previously reported

Compiled by Sesona Ngqakamba

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