The public protector Thuli Madonsela has continued to voice out the need for South Africans to speak out their minds on who they would want to continue defending the public after she retires later this year.
Madonsela, who is about rounding off her tenure is very concerned about who will succeed her and offer a selfless and worthy duty for the benefit of the south African citizens.
To this end, Corruption Watch has lunched a campaign to encourage South Africans to nominate candidates who they feel are worthy to succeed Public Protector Thuli Madonsela, when she leaves at the end of October.
The Watch says the public has the right to nominate a candidate and submit questions that will be asked to those who will be shortlisted.
Prior to the appointment of Madonsela seven years ago, calls similar to the ones made now were made for South Africans to nominate their best candidates. It was even at that time extended because there was just not enough participation from South Africans to find a new public protector.
Not wanting a repeat of such scenario, the Watch has launched its Bua Mzansi campaign in an effort to get more people to participate in public affairs.
The head of Legal and Investigations at Corruption Watch Leanne Govindsamy, said they are out to get the best candidate for the position and this can not be achieved if citizens do not participate.
“We really want the best candidates possible to be interviewed in that process for the next public protector. And the best person to be appointed for the job. We’ve realized that people don’t know enough about the appointment process. They don’t know that as individuals as citizens they can get involved in the process,”
The organisation’s David Lewis also said the public is yet to be aware of their rights to participate in the process. “Whoever is appointed must know that the public is watching and they have a view and are waiting to see whether the public protector protects the public or protects the executive.” he added.
With the current rise of government offices being influenced by top influential people in the country, the office of the Public protector is seen as the most viable instrument that would help check government policies as it affects the public.
This is because the office of the Public protector is subject only to the Constitution and the law and is independent of government and any political party. No person or organ of state may interfere with the functioning of the Public Protector’s office.
“We plan to ensure her replacement is appointed in a transparent manner and is influenced by public opinion. We will campaign to ensure that candidates are properly vetted, that they are qualified and suitable for the post, and that the entire process takes place in the public spotlight.” Corruption Watch said.