Thursday, 15 October 2020 15:16

 

File Photo.

The Pretoria High Court (High Court of South Africa, Gauteng Division in Pretoria) has set aside Public Protector's report on the Financial Services Board.

The report is declared unconstitutional and unlawful and Busisiwe Mkhwebane is also ordered to pay costs.

Mkhwebane may have publicly defended her 2018 report into the Financial Services Board, but within the confines of her office she openly conceded the investigative work that went into the report was "grossly negligent and reckless".

The FSCA, formerly known as the Financial Services Board (FSB), took Mkhwebane’s investigation on review. The investigation was initiated after the stripping of pension fund surpluses in a fraudulent scheme that led to the FSB being placed under curatorship.

Mkhwebane’s report, released in March 2019, contained findings of impropriety and maladministration against the FSB and its then executive officer, advocate Dube Tshidi.

Meanwhile National Assembly Secretary Masibulele Xaso on Thursday stated the three-member panel looking into whether Mkhwebane should be investigated by Parliament is expected to begin work in November.

The panel would have 30 days to make a suggestion. If it finds there isn’t any foundation for an inquiry into Mkhwebane’s fitness to hold office, the matter will finish there.

If not, a multi-party committee of parliament could be arrange to maintain an inquiry.

Xaso stated as a result of the unbiased panel included judges, Speaker Thandi Modise ought to seek the advice of Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng. Until that’s carried out the names of the panelists could be stored beneath wraps.

The panel should be able to start, all things being equal, by the 1st of November and honourable members will be aware that the panel has 30 days within which to conduct its business," Xaso stated.

The Western Cape High Court has dismissed with costs Mkhwebane’s urgent bid to halt the parliamentary process that could see her impeached, paving the way for an inquiry into her fitness to hold office to proceed.

Judge Vincent Saldanha,ruled that Mkhwebane had failed to make a proper case for why National Assembly speaker Thandi Modise should be interdicted from pursuing the 17-step process that parliament has developed to deal with the impeachment of a Chapter 9 institution head — until she has challenged the constitutionality of the rules that will govern that process.