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Why did Mkhwebane meet with Presidency prior to release of Bankorp report?

The Reserve Bank says just two weeks before releasing her final report, Mkhwebane met with the Presidency’s legal advisors.

FILE: Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane. Picture: EWN.

PRETORIA - The Reserve Bank has asked Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane to explain why she met with the Presidency prior to the release of her Bankorp report but did not disclose such meeting in the final document.

The details are contained in a new affidavit filed by the central bank’s legal services in the High Court in Pretoria on Monday.

The Reserve Bank is taking the Bankorp report on review, while the remedial action was set aside last month.

The Reserve Bank says just two weeks before releasing her final report, Mkhwebane met with the Presidency’s legal advisors.

Records show that the proposed remedial action to change the Constitution, an aspect that had nothing to do with the Presidency, was discussed.

The bank says discussing this aspect with the Presidency destroys the Public Protector’s independence.

It is alleged that Mkhwebane did not provide an opportunity to respond to the proposed remedial action to any other party other than the Presidency.

Mkhwebane has defended her conduct, saying she was doing what was required of her to clarify information in her report.

TRANSCRIPTS DEMANDED

The Reserve Bank is demanding that the Public Protector hand over transcripts of her meeting with the Presidency and the State Security Agency.

The demand is made in a new affidavit the central bank has filed in its application to review the Bankorp report which was released in June.

The bank says the record of proceedings Advocate Mkhwebane has handed over so far are woefully incomplete, confused and indecipherable in parts.

It says there’s been extensive correspondence with the Public Protector about the deficiencies in the record but repeated requests have gone unanswered.

Of particular interest are transcripts of meetings with the Presidency’s legal advisors and the State Security Agency.

Records show that Mkhwebane discussed the proposed changes to the Constitution with the Presidency; the bank was only made aware of them after the report was released.

(Edited by Zinhle Nkosi)