Mkhwebane can investigate me, but that shouldn’t block me from suspending her - Ramaphosa

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President Cyril Ramaphosa.
President Cyril Ramaphosa.
PHOTO: Jeffrey Abrahams, Gallo Images

President Cyril Ramaphosa says beleaguered Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane's multiple alleged investigations against him cannot block him from exercising his constitutionally mandated power to suspend her - or remove her from office. 

"Had this been the case the Public Protector could immunise herself against the processes in Section 194 of the Constitution [potential impeachment] by initiating investigations against organs of state or individuals that she considers to be a threat," Ramaphosa stated in papers filed before the Western Cape High Court. 

"Properly construed, the Public Protector's real complaint is that because she has or is investigating me for certain conduct while I hold the office of president [or held the position of deputy president], I may not exercise a constitutionally given power that vests in me as president. The challenge cannot succeed in circumstances where the Public Protector cannot even establish that there is a conflict of interest." 

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