The rift between the president and the former public protector stands another big heat as the president pushes further with his criminal charge against Thuli Madonsela, using the current public Advocate Mkhwebane.
Latest report from the Sunday Times has it that the newly appointed public protector, Busisiwe has issued a criminal charge against her predecessor after she received a complaint from the president.
According to report, advocate Mkhwebane’ s charges are related to Madonsela’s released details of her interview with President Jacob Zuma during her “state capture” investigation.
Madonsela admitted to giving the audiotape of her interview with Zuma to news channel eNCA, which uploaded it and made it freely available to the public.
In the 4-hour long recording, Madonsela can be heard becoming frustrated with Zuma as he refused to answer any of her questions relating to the allegations of state capture, implicating him and the Gupta family.
Instead, Zuma’s lawyer kept interjecting her attempts to get Zuma’s version of events.
Prior to the release of the tape and the publishing of the report into state capture, Zuma took the matter to court, seeking an interdict blocking the report from being published. According to Zuma, he had not been given enough time to answer the questions.
Madonsela stated clearly that Zuma had been made aware of the report and the investigation since March 2016, and had simply ignored every attempt for her office to get answers from him.
The new public protector, advocate Mkhwebane, however, opened the case with the police on November 11, 2016 pointing out that by leaking the audio recording of the interview, Madonsela contravened the Public Protector Act which states:
“No person shall disclose to any person the contents of any document in the possession of a member of the Office of the Public Protector or the record of any evidence given before the public protector … during an investigation, unless the public protector determines otherwise”.
Bongani Ngqulunga, Zuma’s spokesman, told the Sunday Times that the Presidency had lodged a formal complaint with Advocate Mkhwebane and on Friday, the president announced that he was going to take the State of Capture report on judicial review.