DA sees protector report being 'buried'

2011-08-10 22:00

Cape Town - President Jacob Zuma should not be allowed to rewrite the Constitution "by stealth", DA parliamentary leader Athol Trollip said on Wednesday.

The Democratic Alliance was concerned about Zuma and National Assembly Speaker Max Sisulu's response to the findings of public protector Thuli Madonsela's SA Police Service (SAPS) lease deals reports, Trollip said in a statement.

A letter tabled in Parliament sent by Zuma to Sisulu strongly indicated the president had no intention of holding either Public Works Minister Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde or National Police Commissioner Bheki Cele accountable for the improper and unlawful conduct of which the protector found them both guilty, he said.

Secondly, reports that Sisulu had referred the reports to Parliament's Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) illustrated the ANC "is seeking to abuse parliamentary mechanisms to bury" Madonsela's damning findings.

The public protector, as a Chapter Nine institution, reported annually to Parliament, but its independence was enshrined in the Constitution.

Therefore, neither the Speaker, nor Parliament, had a mandate to amend or alter the findings of the protector's report in any way.

Dodgy deals

"Comments reportedly made by Scopa chair Themba Godi - that Scopa would seek legal advice regarding its handling of the... reports, including whether Sopa had the right to debate and amend Madonsela's findings and recommendations - expose the motivation that underlies the Speaker's decision to refer the report to this committee," he said.

This statement was reminiscent of one made recently by ANC treasurer general Mathews Phosa that Parliament should table, debate and, if necessary, amend the report on the "dodgy SAPS lease deals".

"Such sentiment is deeply misguided and must be opposed at all costs. Any attempt by Parliament to alter the public protector's report would constitute a direct undermining of the constitutionally enshrined independence of this institution."

At the same time the Speaker "seeks to bury" the report in Parliament, Zuma's letter to the Speaker appeared to be an attempt to assuage growing criticism of his failure to act decisively against two high ranking government officials.

"It is a feeble attempt to show that some action is being taken. However, its content indicates that the president continues to vacillate on what action, if any, will be taken against the disgraced minister of public works and the national police commissioner," Trollip said.

Remedial action

In the letter, Zuma made no direct mention of any punitive steps that had been taken against Mahlangu-Nkabinde.

Regarding Cele, Zuma stated merely that Cele had submitted a formal response to the minister of police concerning allegations made against him and that, obtusely, the minister would undertake further work with the Treasury and public service and administration.

Trollip said the protector's report did not contain "allegations" as Zuma referred to them, but rather findings arrived at after an exhaustive investigation by an independent body.

"The president cannot be allowed to rewrite the Constitution by stealth and classify the public protector's findings as open to amendment."

Madonsela's findings were clear and her recommendations for remedial action unambiguous. With each day that passed, public confidence in Zuma, his administration, and the SAPS was waning.

Zuma had to take action against those implicated in the report without further delay, Trollip said.

  • James Weather - 2011-08-10 23:34

    Take action zuma or soon the people will start taking action ...

      Geo Farmer - 2011-08-11 04:42

      CITIZENS!!! Hasn't the TIME come that we stand together and implement some form of CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE?? For the sake of our future generations, we need to show the world and the CORRUPT ANC REGIME that we are "GATVOL!!!" PLease..... TAMARA, SCHALK or one of our regular intellegent NEWS 24 Topic Posters lead the way forward. THANK YOU.

      Dominic - 2011-08-11 06:13

      Can our president be impeached for inaction? Can he be investigated by the public prosecutor for incompetence and maladministration?

      Baas Frik - 2011-08-11 07:16

      Every tax payer should stop paying taxes.

      Baas Frik - 2011-08-11 07:27

      Let us stop paying tax.

      York Hunt - 2011-08-11 12:29

      Hey let's face it, if Bheki Cele is dismissed, all that will happen is that another corrupt ANC cadre will step and continue the Corrupt Crusade. These guys are dedicated to ruining our country and our future.

  • cliffarc - 2011-08-10 23:34

    - The constitution is a mere inconvenience for the Anc, in their lust for wealth and power. That hard won set of sacred rules and rights for all citizens, will undoubtedly be ignored and trashed by this rougish govt. There is no more sanity in this country.

  • Supermack - 2011-08-11 03:55

    This so called parliament/president and policy of afirmheid (replacing apartheid) being implemented by the present regime, will eventually see the downfall of democractic south Africa.

      Jabulaniboy - 2011-08-11 05:44

      Exactly what Malama wants. Why are we against his flow????

  • Geo Farmer - 2011-08-11 04:21

    OH FOR THE DAY THESE CORRUPT ANC OFFICIALS WILL BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR THEIR ACTIONS!!! This REGIME only needs to see what is happening in Egypt with the trial of Muburak and his cronies. BE WARNED, YOU SCUM OF THE EARTH !!!

      DEVILS SON - 2011-08-11 08:21

      we will have our turn i fear

      Sheda Hab - 2011-08-11 21:07

      The day is coming soon....... very soon........ get your BB and Twitter accounts ready.......

      Cheryl Muir - 2011-08-11 21:35

      black and white citizens should march together in streets united against these corrupt acts of treason against the nation... or are we too spineless ? the corrupt are trying to make out that it is whites against blacks. but we should march together against president for life zuma and his police commisioner , corrupt freinds, cronies and mates he has surounded himself with

  • Dominic - 2011-08-11 05:25

    The beautiful Aung San Suu Kyi imprisoned for as long as Mandela (for the crime of winning an election) wrote the following famous quote more than 20 years ago in an essay titled Freedom From Fear: "It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it." It goes some way to explaining Zuma's paralysis.

      Charlie - 2011-08-11 10:01

      Zuma is the worst thing to happen to this country, spineless corrupt little boy, and yet the next in line, even worse! Africans that support the anc must be ashamed to see what has become of "Mandela's anc" This corruption is affecting the poor the worst...don't they see this??? Time for Moeletsi Mbeki to stand up to these thieving hypocrites I think!!!

  • peterjohn.botha - 2011-08-11 07:01

    This is a question/challenge to all our courts, SAPS, Hawks, and all involved in Law enforcement. Why do our laws NOT apply to government officials? Why do our laws NOT apply to people connected to the government? I often hear of ANC, ANCYL and other affiliated people being charged but I very seldom hear of any of them being convicted and sentenced, especially not any of the high profile cases. Here is some proof (as I see it) that our Law enforcers are a bunch of cowards. The ANC and ANCYL are seen to be getting away with “murder” while I read of woman being arrested and thrown into jail for crossing a solid white line on the road. Why are the ANC and ANCYL members who are allegedly responsible for corruption worth hundreds of millions not arrested and thrown into jail, tried, sentenced and incarcerated? BECAUSE NO ONE HAS THE BALLS…… Why is justice not seen to be done? The answer is very simple: JUSTICE IS NOT BEING DONE.

      DEVILS SON - 2011-08-11 07:36

      no because from a freedom fighter and bomber of the innocents point of view corruption is a misdemeanor

      York Hunt - 2011-08-11 12:31

      To answer your question, the ANC is one, corrupt, can of worms. The judiciary is one of the most corrupt of government departments. That's why nothing ever happens to top cadres!!! See?

  • DEVILS SON - 2011-08-11 07:21


  • Thabo Matwabeng - 2011-08-11 07:46

    Nothing prevents any of us to lay criminal charges against any of the accused. If 10 000 citizens go to police stations to lay the same charge, it will be difficult to ignore it.

      DEVILS SON - 2011-08-11 08:05

      good idea

      photonic - 2011-08-11 08:15

      Good idea Thabo

      DEVILS SON - 2011-08-11 08:20

      i bet most stations will refuse to help though, not against their cele

      Dominic - 2011-08-11 08:28

      @DEVILS SON Charges have already been laid against Cele.

      DEVILS SON - 2011-08-11 08:36

      yeah dom i know, im saying from a public perspective, you or i would have probably been assaulted if we tried layin the charge, but the DA has the standing to get the charge through

  • shmangle - 2011-08-11 09:22

    Of course, Zuma won't do anything to his bum-chum.

  • tokoloshe - 2011-08-11 09:44


  • PB - 2011-08-11 10:04

    To our lame president Stop trying to hang onto your position. It does not help, your protege has already done everyting necessary to prevent you from retaining the presidency. The Fat Fart and his new protectors in the ANC are working very hard at exposing you for the spinless, gutsless, useless pawn that you are. You will not be the Chosen One in 2012, they are working on replacing you with one of the pro-ANCYL a-holes. You are all talk and no action - STOP RUINING OUR CONSTITUTION, TAKE ACTION AND AT LEAST BE PRO-ACTIVE FOR ONCE IN YOUR TERM.

  • Voyager - 2011-08-11 10:15

    Phansi cANCer, Phansi!!!

  • GV - 2011-08-11 10:52

    It is about time that someone organised a march / sit in to the Union Buildings. Call on everyone opposed to abuse of power and failure to act on criminality to attend.

  • York Hunt - 2011-08-11 12:22


  • Zebelon - 2011-08-11 22:16

    Seemingly, Zuma, in his endeavour to find a way of protecting Cele and his ANC minister, does not have the capacity and capability to compehend the constitutional standing and pronouncements of the Public Protector. He thinks he can come up with another finding on the pronouncements relating to the spending on police accommodation in Pretoria and Durban.

  • Zebelon - 2011-08-11 22:20

    Like Malema who is entertaining hopes of changing the constitution to accommodate nationalisation of farms.

      tryanything - 2011-08-16 18:47

      We will we will ....Rob you..

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