DA’s Steenhuisen: It Shouldn’t Be Easy To Remove Head Of Chapter 9 Institution

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane
Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane. Picture: @PublicProtector/Twitter

Parliament has got down to work on drafting rules and procedures to govern the removal of a Public Protector.

The National Assembly’s rules committee is sitting on Tuesday morning as it starts to look at rules that will deal with the removal of any head of a Chapter Nine institution, including the Auditor-General.

Parliament’s justice committees decided last month that new rules were needed before they considered the DA’s request for a formal inquiry into Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s fitness to hold office.

DA chief whip John Steenhuisen said it should not be easy to remove any head of a Chapter Nine body, especially the Public Protector.

“It shouldn’t be easy to simply by majority vote to remove a Public Protector from office because it’s a double-edged sword. A malevolent government, I’m not saying this one is, could use the procedure to remove a Public Protector who is actually doing their job.”

The DA has submitted its own draft rules as a starting point for discussion, including that an independent panel first assesses allegations of misconduct, incompetence and incapacity to do the job.

Steenhuisen’s urged there be no delay in devising rules to govern the removal of the Public Protector.

Deputy ANC chief whip Doris Dlakude said the governing party wanted a process that was fair and would stand the test of time.