It is unclear whether Public Protector can recommend amending Constitution

Posted June 20, 2017

Tshwane - Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane announced on Monday that she would be opposing President Jacob Zuma's application to review and set aside the damning "State of Capture" report compiled by her predecessor Thuli Madonsela.

"The allegation whether the South African government improperly failed to implement the CIEX report ... after commissioning and duly paying for same is substantiated".

Mkhwebane said her investigation had found that the apartheid government breached the constitution by supplying Bankorp, which was acquired by Absa in 1992, with a series of bailouts from 1985 to 1995.

"The correct amount of the illegal gift granted to Bankorp Limited/ABSA Bank is in the amount of R1,125 billion". Instead of directing that the money be recovered with interest, Mkhwebane has now instructed the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) to reopen a probe into the matter.

ANCYL President Collin Maine says they are willing to work with Mkhwebane to ensure the money is paid back.

She said this failure constitutes "improper conduct and maladministration" and wants the SIU to recover the "misappropriated" public funds unlawfully given to Absa and investigate other institutions mentioned in the Ciex report.

Mkhwebane has also directed the portfolio committee on justice and correctional services to initiate a process to amend the Constitution.

South African bonds weakened on Monday afternoon in line with the rand, which in turn, was affected by local political concerns.

Ratings agencies have previously cited the independence of the Reserve Bank as one of the institutional strengths that counts in the country's favour.

Ciex released a report soon after, titled Project Spear, which investigated how banks in the Bankorp group were offered R1.5-billion by the apartheid government as a "lifeboat" to offset bad loans.