Some political parties yesterday lashed out at the ANC for criticising Public Protector Thuli Madonsela after she attended a rally organised by the DA in Port Elizabeth on Women’s Day.
United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa told The New Age that the ANC’s criticism was akin to hypocrisy of the highest order.
He said Madonsela also attended the governing party’s centenary celebrations in the Free State earlier this year.
“The ANC invited many Chapter 9 institution heads to their functions in the past. I have always asked myself why these heads attended their functions,” Holomisa said.
“Madonsela’s attendance at the ANC centenary gathering was surprising, even though she did not speak officially.”
Acting secretary-general of Cope, Lyndall Shope-Mafole, agreed, describing the call on Madonsela not to attend certain meetings as a direct violation of the Constitution. She said no person of integrity would change the values that enabled them to be appointed to important offices by attending a meeting organised by a political party.
“What is important is that such meetings are not held under the veil of secrecy. In terms of our Constitution, all Chapter 9 institutions are independent and they must exercise their powers and perform their functions without fear, favour and prejudice,” Shope-Mafole said.
“We view the attack on Madonsela as an attempt by the ruling alliance to introduce regulations on her operations in violation of our Constitution.”
Paseka Moshoadiba, secretary-general for the African People’s Convention, said: “If Madonsela only attends DA rallies that will be a problem, but there is nothing wrong in this case.”
Moshoadiba said Madonsela’s attendance of political party rallies and other events would give her a chance to get a sense of what was happening in the communities. He said the ANC felt threatened by the fact that Madonsela might get information about corrupt practices involving the governing party members in government.
Madonsela’s office had since defended her for attending the DA rally.
Spokesperson Kgalalelo Masibi said the attendance was, among other things, in fulfilment of Madonsela’s constitutional obligation of being accessible to all people and communities, as stipulated by section 182 of the Constitution.