In response to the Democratic Alliance’s (DA) claims that they didn’t ask Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane to investigate President Cyril Ramaphosa for money laundering, the public protector’s office had issued a statement expressing Mkhwebane’s reaction to their claims.
The DA reportedly distanced itself from Mkhwebane’s investigation according to a Business Day report which they have since labelled misleading.
Part of a statement issued by the party on the matter reads: “Today’s headline in the Business Day, ‘DA denies raising laundering issue’, is misleading and seeks to distort the truth as it pertains to the public protector’s investigation into the President Ramaphosa’s relationship with Bosasa (now African Global Operations). At no stage has the DA distanced itself from this investigation or the contents thereof. Rather, we have been explicitly clear in our call for the matter to be finalised, and for parliament to establish an Ad Hoc Committee to consider the report and its findings – as it did with the Nkandla report.”
According to the statement, Mkhwebane is taken aback by what she believed were both the claims of both the DA and the “CR17 campaign managers” regarding the investigation involving the president.
The DA was believed, following a Business Day report and before Maimane’s statement seeking to set the record straight, to have alleged that Mkhwebane was never asked to investigate allegations of money laundering in relation to the African Global Operations donation to Ramaphosa’s campaign for ANC presidency.
In her statement, Mkhwebane refers back to Maimane’s original complaint before citing a case in which the Supreme Court of Appeal ruled that “the public protector should not be bound or limited by the issues raised for consideration and determination by the parties but should investigate further and discover the truth and also inspire confidence that the truth has been discovered.”
She concluded by lambasting certain unnamed journalists for their conduct in relation to the investigation at hand which she believed borders on interfering with the function of her office in addition to adding a copy of Maimane’s original complaint for reference.
UPDATE: This story has been updated to reflect DA leader Mmusi Maimane’s denial of reports that the DA had “distanced” itself from the money laundering aspect of Public Protector Mkhebane’s investigation. 15:08, June 24.