Presidency: “Ramaphosa Stands By His Decision To Suspend Mkhwebane”

“Alternatively, I hereby squarely challenge you to pronounce when and on what occasion you may allege the proceedings envisaged in the section had indeed started. Your conduct is ultra vires and illegal,” Mkhwebane said in the letter.

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President Cyril Ramaphosa/Photo File: Getty Images

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s decision to suspend public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane has sparked a heated debate online.

Some on social media have commended his “decisiveness,” while others predict a battle between the two. Mkhwebane has issued an ultimatum to the president, demanding that her suspension be lifted immediately.

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Mkhwebane was suspended with immediate effect by the president last week, pending the outcome of an impeachment process in parliament. The impeachment hearings are set to begin on July 11.

In a short tweet, the president’s spokesperson, Vincent Magwenya, confirmed that Ramaphosa would be sticking to his guns, paving the way for more court action between the pair.

She stated that if Ramaphosa does not lift her suspension, she will file a legal challenge without further notice to the president.

Mkhwebane said her suspension in terms of section 194 (3)(a) “is not lawfully triggered by the taking place of the process but only arises at any time after the start of the proceedings of a committee of the National Assembly for the removal of that person”.

“Alternatively, I hereby squarely challenge you to pronounce when and on what occasion you may allege the proceedings envisaged in the section had indeed started. Your conduct is ultra vires and illegal,” Mkhwebane said in the letter.

However, the Presidency’s office confirmed on Tuesday night that Ramaphosa would not bow to Mkhwebane’s ultimatum.

The tug-of-war between the president and the Public Protector appears to be far from over, with Mkhwebane threatening to appeal the decision.

The president’s spokesperson, Vincent Magwenya, confirmed in a short tweet that Ramaphosa would stick to his guns, paving the way for more legal action between the two.

“President Ramaphosa has responded to advocate Mkhwebane and stands by his decision as communicated before,” he said.

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The president’s stance sparked online debate. Here is a look at some reactions:

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