FOLLOWING the recommendations of the protector, Busisiwe Mkhwebane, to change the constitution, the Economic Freedom Fighters are calling for her to step down, while the Democratic Alliance says she was the wrong candidate for the post.
In her report on the Reserve Bank’s bailout of Bankcop in the early 1990s, Mkhwebane made the recommendation that the bank’s mandate should be changed to protect the people and not the currency, as it is currently stated in the constitution. This finding has forced the Reserve Bank to approached the court to have Mkhwebane’s report declared invalid, arguing that a stable currency is essential for economic growth.
In the meantime, Mkhwebane has conceded that her recommendation was beyond her mandate, and that she was wrong to ask for changes in the constitution.
With the speaker of parliament, Baleka Mbete, and finance minister, Malusi Gigaba, joining the legal bid against Mkhwebane, this strengthens the DA’s stance that Mkhwebane was the wrong candidate for the position in the first place.
On Monday evening, Mkhwebane announced she would not oppose the bank’s court application to overturn her findings.
This sparked the EFF to call for Mkhwebane to resign. They described her recommendations as dangerous.
In a press statement, the EFF wrote, “… [we ask Mkhwebane] to do the honourable thing and step down. This is not only for an illegitimate and dangerous remedial action, but also for the audacity of offering to use public funds to pay for her incompetent decisions.”
The DA maintains that her admission raises serious questions about her ability to perform independently, and that her lack of understanding of the constitution is an indictment on her office.
They also say that Mkhwebane should be held personally liable for the costs of the court application.