- Public Protector, Busisiwe Mkhwebane, released a statement relating to her investigation into Pravin Gordhan
- The probe pertains to a complaint received by the public protector's office in 2016 regarding the former deputy commissioner of Sars, Ivan Pillay's early retirement
- Mkhwebane said her investigation has no relation to the state capture inquiry
A statement, by the public protector, Busisiwe Mkhwebane, has clarified her probe into Pravin Gordhan's conduct.
In the statement, Mkhwebane details why she subpoenaed Gordhan. She claims he failed to respond to four letters. In these letters, the public enterprises minister was asked to address the claims leveled against him.
According to a report by The Citizens, this is the latest in the pair's ongoing fight. It was earlier reported that in February, the public protector admitted she has no evidence against him, said Tebogo Malatji, Gordhan's lawyer.
Malatji said in a statement that Mkhwebane indicated in her letter that there's no evidence that the minister did anything wrong.
Mkhwebane did not speak about her claims she had no evidence to link Gordhan to any wrongdoing.
However, Mkhwebane did explain she was, by law, empowered to undergo a preliminary investigation to determine the merits of complaints. The public protector added she can also investigate someone based on accusations made in the media.
Meanwhile, Mkhwebane added she expects the full cooperation from those she's investigating that hold public positions. The public protector said a public official can be examined and asked to submit an affidavit, adding that if someone refuses to comply with her requests, and they were found guilty, they could face up to a year in jail, or a R40 000 fine. Mkhwebane said anyone who is asked to respond to her has to do so personally, and not through their legal team.
Mkhwebane said her investigation into Gordhan had no ties with the state capture inquiry. She said it was a coincidence that her subpoena was issued almost at the same time Gordhan was set to stand witness during the inquiry.
Briefly.co.za learned that Mkhwebane was investigating claims of maladministration, dishonesty and improper conduct against the minister.
The claims relate to a complaint, which was submitted in November 2016, pertaining to former deputy commissioner of Sars, Ivan Pillay's early retirement.
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