Following former Public Protector, Thuli Madonsela’s acceptance to pay for a state vehicle her son crashed five years ago, Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane said she will write to Thuli.
Mkhwebane said this on Monday after she went through Thuli’s letter, expressing her readiness to pay for the car damages.
The Public Protector office also announced that Mkhwebane is waiting for a legal opinion on the matter from the state attorney for future reference.
Thuli and Busisiwe have been locking horns over the payment of the R470k since the latter succeeded the former. There have also been reports of a cold war between the duo but we can clearly tell that the issue of the car damage is one of the bones of contention.
In her letter, Thuli said in addition to paying for the damages, she will also reimburse the public protector’s office for using another car for a month.
She added that the decision to pay back the money was guided by her moral compass and conceded that she could have handled the matter better, regardless of the fact that she was convinced the law is on her side.
“Kindly receive my offer to pay for the cost of the repairs for the state car that was damaged in an accident while being driven, without my authorisation, by my son, who was about 22 years old at the time. The offer effectively authorizes the public protector of South Africa as ex-post facto to keep the amount arbitrarily deducted from my gratuity on 15 October 2016.
“Our moral compass is compromised when we forget that we are not echoes of those that are against us or appear to be so. Those of us who believe in a better world must be the first to do what we believe is right…,” she wrote in her letter.
She ended her letter by apologizing to South Africans and the government for the regrettable incident. She also asked Mkhwebane to convey her regards to the team.
Public Protector Busi Mkhwebane confirmed in February that money had been deducted from Madonsela’s gratuity because she continued to use an official vehicle, a BMW X6 after her tenure ended and for a collision.
In 2012 Madonsela’s son reportedly drove the vehicle assigned to his mother and crashed it
Madonsela’s son, Wantu, 27, crashed the car in 2012 into the garden wall of a house on Lucky Bean Crescent near Moreleta Park in Pretoria Pretoria while trying to avoid a dog.
Meanwhile, the African National Congress Women’s League (ANCWL) has called on former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela to be charged for the incidence.
The league reiterated that Mkhwebane must consider laying a charge of defeating the ends of justice against her Madonsela.
A member of the league Meokgo Matuba added that the Public Protector must also investigate the circumstances under which Madonsela’s son used the state vehicle.
“We expect her to lead by example to do the right thing and definitely account. Mkhwebane should also investigate whether Madonsela gave her son permission to drive the car,” Matuba said.