AS IT HAPPENED | Ramaphosa takes Public Protector's 'fundamentally flawed' report on urgent court review

2019-07-21 17:55

President Cyril Ramaphosa is briefing the nation on Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane's report on allegations that he violated the Executive Ethics Code of conduct related to a Bosasa donation.

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President Cyril Ramaphosa delivers his State of th

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Last Updated at 15:33
21 Jul 18:34

ANC welcomes Ramaphosa's decision

The ANC welcomes the position taken by President Ramaphosa to study the Public Protector’s report and make a decision on any further action which may include and but not limited to judicial review, it said in a statement on Sunday.

"President Ramaphosa’s reaffirmation of his respect for the Office of the Public Protector and his appreciation of the essential role it needs to play in promoting accountability and advancing the interests of the South African people is consistent with the views of the ANC on all Chapter 9 institutions.

"The ANC is further emboldened by President Ramaphosa’s unwavering commitment and determination to fight all forms of corruption and malfeasance. The ANC has full confidence in President Ramaphosa’s ability to champion efforts of building the South Africa we want free from disunity and underdevelopment."

21 Jul 18:26

21 Jul 18:25

21 Jul 18:24

Campaign managers and sourcing money

I knew that money was being sourced, but was never told of the intricate issues the campaign managers got involved in.

Yes, I knew money was being raised, and even went to the fundraising dinners, and told of the vision we had crafted of the South Africa and the ANC we wanted to lead.

Yes, we had knowledge but the knowledge to the large extent was limited.

21 Jul 18:22

It is in the culture and the tradition of the ANC that I lead, that we bring everyone into the kraal to work together. Working together is not a one day event. It is a process.

Without unity, we have disunity, we have destruction and we will not be able to meet the needs of our people.

21 Jul 18:21

When asked what he meant by being 'distracted':

Work I was elected to do, together with my colleagues in cabinet. We do not want all this to distract us from doing our work.

21 Jul 18:20

21 Jul 18:20

What will the judicial review entail?

That will be worked out by the lawyers, Ramaphosa says, but would like an expedited process.

21 Jul 18:15

21 Jul 18:14

21 Jul 18:11
Ramaphosa is taking the public protector's report on judicial review.

21 Jul 18:10
Given these deficiencies, and consistent with our constitutional architecture, its important that the courts make a final, impartial determination of this matter.

21 Jul 18:10

After careful study I have concluded that the report is fundamentally & irretrievably flawed. This is strongly confirmed by my legal representatives, who have equally studied the PP’s report very thoroughly.

The report contains numerous factual inaccuracies of a material nature. The findings we found are wrong in law, are irrational & in some instances exceed the scope of the powers of the public protector.

21 Jul 18:09
It is therefore essential, as it should be in all investigations, that such findings are based in fact, have sound legal basis, are rational and have been found through a fair and unbiased process. Unfortunately the report by the public protector falls short.

21 Jul 18:08
The findings of the public protector are very serious and should not be taken lightly.

21 Jul 18:08

We have taken decisive measures to halt the abuse of public bodies for private gain.

The Zondo Commission of Inquiry continues its work.We are continuing to strengthen institutions like the National Prosecuting Authority, the South African Police Service, the Special Investigating Unit, the State Security Agency and the South African Revenue Service.

This work must continue – and it must be intensified – if we are to rid our country of all forms of corruption and criminality.

This requires, among other things, that we respect, strengthen and defend the institutions established by our Constitution to support democracy and safeguard the rights of our people.

The Public Protector is one such institution. It carries a Constitutional responsibility to investigate any allegations of improper conduct in state affairs or public administration and to take appropriate remedial action.

It is essential that the Public Protector enjoys the confidence of South Africans, that it acts impartially – without prejudice or favour – and that it is above reproach. It is essential that the Public Protector acts independently, within the law and according to the Constitution.

21 Jul 18:06

21 Jul 18:05

Many South Africans have expressed concern about the findings [of the public protector] and their implications for the country.

I have decided that it is necessary that I should as president make a statement on the issue to address these concerns and reaffirm the work I was elected to do as president will continue as usual.

21 Jul 18:04
President Cyril Ramaphosa is live now

21 Jul 18:03

Mkhwebane's posture long indicated a negative finding on Ramaphosa - SACP

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane's findings were not surprising, the SACP said shortly after the announcement. SACP spokesperson Alex Mashilo said her posture indicated all along she was destined for a negative finding.

"The SACP expressed its reservations a while ago about the manner in which Mkhwebane conducts herself and the affairs of the absolutely important Office of the Public Protector. The material basis of the concern is found in the damning court judgments against her.

"This includes the reasonable apprehension of bias, disingenuousness and unconstitutional conduct found by the court of law in her work, directly resulting in the SACP calling on Parliament to conduct an inquiry into her fitness to hold office."

The party said it would take its "cue from the courts as the final arbiters".

21 Jul 18:03

ANC backs president to fight corruption, disunity despite Bosasa report

ANC spokesperson Pule Mabe on Saturday said the party noted the report, but welcomed Ramaphosa’s position to study the report before taking a decision on whether to take further action, which may include a judicial review.

"The ANC has full confidence in President Ramaphosa's ability to champion efforts of building the South Africa we want free from disunity and underdevelopment," Mabe said.

"President Ramaphosa's reaffirmation of his respect for the Office of the Public Protector and his appreciation of the essential role it needs to play in promoting accountability and advancing the interests of the South African people is consistent with the views of the ANC on all Chapter 9 institutions.

"The ANC is further emboldened by President Ramaphosa's unwavering commitment and determination to fight all forms of corruption and malfeasance."

21 Jul 17:59

CR17 funds probe 'unlawful' - Ramaphosa

President Cyril Ramaphosa told Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane in his submissions to her that her office's investigation into funds relating to his ANC presidential campaign was "out of her jurisdiction". In a 51-page submission to Mkhwebane made before her findings were made public this week, which News24 has seen, the president told her that all findings made against him were unfounded.

"The president does not accept that the Public Protector has jurisdiction to investigate the CR17 campaign and to make any findings in relation to it," the submission read.

Ramaphosa's lawyers argued that his funding campaign was in his capacity as an ANC member and leader, not a public office bearer.

21 Jul 15:28

ANALYSIS: Ramaphosa delivered body blow by Mkhwebane as political tectonic plates collide

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane delivered a mortal blow to the reformist President Cyril Ramaphosa on Friday.

The findings against him are the very worst he could have expected. Not only did he "deliberately" mislead Parliament about the paltry R500 000 donation to his campaign by Bosasa's Gavin Watson, but in doing so he violated the Constitution, failed to declare donations and the National Prosecuting Authority must investigate allegations of money-laundering, she found.

The findings will have enormous consequences for a head of state that constructed his whole campaign on fighting graft, rolling back capture and restoring faith in the rule of law. He will now be attacked as someone who is corrupt and dishonest – enough grounds for a Constitutional process to have him removed.

21 Jul 15:18

Public Protector finds president 'deliberately misled' Parliament over R500 000 Bosasa payment

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane found that President Cyril Ramaphosa deliberately misled Parliament when he responded to a question about a R500 000 donation to his 2017 ANC presidential campaign in November last year, she revealed on Friday.

Mkhwebane found that Ramaphosa's actions were inconsistent with his office as deputy president at the time.She also found that Ramaphosa breached the Executive Ethics Code by failing to disclose financial interest accrued to him as a result of the donations received for the so-called CR17 campaign.

The Public Protector found that the donation should have been disclosed. Ramaphosa said he disclosed interests every year and continued to do so.

Mkhwebane released her report on the Bosasa donation saga on Friday morning at her offices in Pretoria. 

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