Fourteen candidates vying for the office of South Africa’s Public Protector have been shortlisted by Parliament Members.
Thuli Madonsela’s term ends in October and by law she is not eligible for reappointment.
After going through over 50 CVs; the special parliamentary committee tasked with finding Madonsela’s successor, on Wednesday emerged with a shortlist.
As culled from an Eyewitness report, here are details of the 14 shortlisted candidates (in alphabetical order by surname):
Narnia Bohler-Muller is the Executive Director of the Africa Institute of South Africa and the Human Science Research Council.
She obtained a B Juris, LLB and LLM from the University of Port Elizabeth and an LLD from the University of Pretoria.
Nonkosi Cetwayo is an advocate of the High Court. She holds a BA and LLB from the University of Cape Town. She is the current sheriff of the Bellville High Court.
Her experience includes working in the National Assembly as the head of the Office on Institutions Supporting Democracy (chapter nine institutions). She was the strategic advisor to the deputy president in the Presidency between 2008 and 2009.
Her CV discloses that she was the secretary of the ANC Women’s League in Langa between 1995 and 1996, and vice secretary of the ANC’s Langa branch between 1992 and 1993.
Siraj Desai is an experienced High Court judge. He worked as an attorney for Dullah Omar, South Africa’s first post-apartheid Minister of Justice.
Desai is the former chairperson of the National Council for Correctional Services where he served for 14 years. In 1996 he took up the position of deputy chairperson of the Foundation for Human Rights in South Africa.
Desai is the founding member of the National Association of Democratic Lawyers. He is also a council member of the Cape University of Technology and board member of District Six Museum.
In 2004 Desai was accused of raping a South African woman, Salomé Isaacs, while attending a conference in India. He initially denied having sexual intercourse with Isaacs, but later admitted to intercourse though insisted he did not rape her. Isaacs later withdrew the charges.
Desai was nominated for the position of Public Protector.
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Willie Hofmeyr is the deputy National Director of Public Prosecutions. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, MA in Economic History and a LLB from the University of Cape Town.
Hofmeyr was previously the head of the Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU), as well as the Special Investigating Unit. He also served as a Member of Parliament for the African National Congress and was part of the Constitutional Assembly that was involved in drafting the final South African Constitution.
It also states that media reports indicate the Hofmeyr played a central role in dropping corruption charges against President Jacob Zuma.
Hofmeyr was nominated for the position of Public Protector by Hilton van Niekerk.
Kaajal Ramjathan-Keogh is currently executive director of the Southern Africa Litigation Centre (SALC). She holds a B Proc and LLB from the University of Natal and is admitted as an attorney.
Ramjathan-Keogh was previously employed as the manager of the Refugee and Migrants Rights Programme at the Lawyers for Human Rights, as well as the Southern African regional representative for the International Detention Coalition.
She led the court application to have Sudanese President Omar Al-Basheer arrested for war crimes in South Africa during the African Union Summit.
She was nominated for the position of Public Protector by Students for Law and Social Justice.
Muvhango Lukhaimane currently serves as the Pension Funds Adjudicator (PFA). She is admitted as an advocate of the High Court and obtained various qualifications such as a B Juris, LLB, LLM, as well as an MBA.
She applied for the position of Public Protector.
Bongani Majola is an advocate of the High Court and former member of the Johannesburg Bar Council. He obtained a Masters of Law degree from Harvard Law School in 1988 and has previous experience as the national director for the Legal Resources Centre.
He occupied the post of dean of the law faculty at the University of Limpopo. Majola was appointed as the deputy chief prosecutor at the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (UNICTR) in 2003 and was subsequently promoted to assistant secretary general of the UN and registrar of the UNICTR in 2013.
He was nominated for the position of Public Protector in 2002, but declined the nomination. This year he is presumed to have applied himself.
Kevin Malunga is currently the deputy Public Protector. He obtained a BA Law Degree from the University of Swaziland, LLB from the University of South Africa, LLM from Georgetown University and is a candidate for a Doctor of Juridical Science from the University of Wisconsin. He was appointed as an advocate of the High Court in 2005 and previously served as the acting chief of staff in the Office of the Chief Justice.
Busisiwe Mkhwebane is the director of the Country Information and Cooperation Management Unit for the Department of Home Affairs. She obtained a B Proc and LLB from the University of the North and a diploma in corporate law and a higher diploma in tax law from the University of Johannesburg.
Mkhwebane is an advocate of the High Court and previously worked in the Office of the Public Protector for a period of seven years, during which time she was mainly a senior investigator but rose to the position of acting provincial head.
Mkhwebane is presumed to have nominated herself.
Chris Mokoditwa has been an advocate of the High Court since 1994. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of South Africa, an LLB from the University of Bophuthatswana and an LLM from the University of Johannesburg.
Mokoditwa was previously employed by the South Gauteng High Court as an assessor in criminal trials and served as the directorate for the Special Pensions Review Board in the National Treasury.
Mokoditwa was shortlisted for the position of Public Protector in 2002, but was unsuccessful as Lawrence Mushwana was appointed.
He applied for the position of Public Protector this year.
Michael Mthembu is an advocate of the High Court. He obtained a B Proc and LLB from the University of KwaZulu-Natal. He was admitted as an attorney of the High Court in 1981, and was admitted as an advocate of the High Court in 2002. He was previously employed as an acting judge in the Eastern Cape and served as the commissioner of the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa.
Mthembu is also a judge in the Electoral Court, having been appointed for a six-year term in 2011. He has previously applied for the position of Public Protector, but was unsuccessful.
He applied again for the position of Public Protector this year.
Jill Oliphant is a shareholder and director of DMO Incorporated. She has a legal and financial background, and has been involved in various cases of due diligence and forensic investigations for public entities, financial institutions and the Asset Forfeiture Unit. She is an admitted attorney of the High Court and is currently completing her Masters in Business Administration.
It is presumed she applied for the position of Public Protector herself.
Mamiki Goodman is an executive manager at the National Gambling Board of South Africa. She obtained a B Proc, LLB and LLM from the University of South Africa. Goodman was previously employed as deputy Public Protector and was the divisional manager and head of legal services at the Gauteng Department of Education.
In 2006 Goodman accused former Public Protector Lawrence Mushwana of sexually harassing her and other female colleagues while she was serving as his deputy. Mushwana refuted the claims and noted that she only started the allegations after her reprimanded her about her work and unnecessary expenses.
Sharise Weiner is a judge of the High Court and previously a senior advocate, with bar admissions in Lesotho, England and Wales. While in practice her areas of specialisation were in corporate law. She is extensively involved in legal training, including internationally. Weiner also served as a part-time commissioner for the CCMA.