“Police Minister has no right to change my findings” - Madonsela

BY CHARL BOSCH - APRIL 10, 2015

Public Protector, Thuli Madonsela, has said that President Jacob Zuma wanting to be the judge in his own case is impossible, and that she stands by her findings and recommendations relating to the upgrades at his private Nkandla homestead.

Speaking at an open debate session hosted by Die Burger newspaper at the Klein Karoo National Arts Festival in Oudtshoorn yesterday, Madonsela said that Police Minister, Nathi Nhleko, does not have the authority to review her case, and that she had already written a letter to him stating that Zuma must pay back a portion of the R264-million spent on security upgrades as per her 'Secure in Comfort' report.

“The constitution affords the Public Protector the authority to make such a decision. Only a court of law has the authority to rule against my findings,” the paper quoted Madonsela as saying.

She also stated that Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Justice, to which her office reports, had changed their stance regarding the Public Protector since the Nkandla debacle, and that her findings “are in line with the constitution and not because I said so”.

Madonsela further rubbished claims made by the controversial Africa Intelligence Leaks blog site alleging her to be a CIA plant, saying she finds it “worrying that someone would go so far to spread hateful lies about me”

Last month, the State Security Agency (SSA) announced that it had lodged an investigation into the contents of the blog, which claims her as well as Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema, former Democratic Alliance (DA) Parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko and Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) president Joseph Mathunjwa, to be spying on the government.

She had previously referred to the blog as being “rubbish” and that is was merely a way of providing Zuma with a reason to fire her.