President 2, Public Protector 0 in legal wrangling over remedial action

President Cyril Ramaphosa Picture: Elmond Jiyane,
President Cyril Ramaphosa Picture: Elmond Jiyane,

President Cyril Ramaphosa has walked away from the Pretoria High Court with another legal victory against Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane.

On Monday morning the court ruled that the president should be granted an interdict against Mkhwebane’s remedial action over the Bosasa report.

The ruling was based on Mkhwebane’s investigation into a controversial R500 000 donation that was made to the presidential campaign by Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson. Ramaphosa had initially claimed that the amount was a donation for his son, Andile, but had later admitted that it was for the presidential campaign.

Read: Busisiwe will release Cyril’s records

Following the release of her findings into the donation, Mkhwebane had recommended that Ramaphosa should disclose the campaign’s funders to Parliament and said that he had misled Parliament over the Bosasa donations.

But Monday’s ruling meant that Ramaphosa was not obliged to take action pending a judicial review. The application was unopposed by Mkhwebane.

This is the second victory in a week for the president, after the Pretoria High Court granted him an interdict last Thursday against having to implement remedial action contained in a report against him by Mkhwebane against Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan.

It was ruled that the president would only have to take action against Gordhan after 30 days following the finalisation of Gordhan’s review application.

In her ruling, Judge Lettie Molopa-Sethosa said that Ramaphosa’s actions were “rational” and he was not challenging the factual findings of the Public Protector.

Following Mkhwebane’s defeat on Thursday, Economic Freedom Fighters spokesperson Mbuyseni Ndlozi came out strongly against the ruling, and said that Gordhan was being treated as if he was above the law.

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