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Why Gordhan, Pillay are going after Mkhwebane in court

Gordhan said while they respect the Constitution, the minister recorded his serious misgivings about the public protector, her conduct and her partiality.

FILE: This file photo shows Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan and former Sars commissioner Ivan Pillay are both heading to court to have the public protector's most recent report overturned.

Busisiwe Mkhwebane released damning findings on the pair's role in the Sars High Risk Investigations Unit, which allegedly carried out rogue operations such as bugging the National Prosecuting Authority's offices. The unit was set up to investigate high-profile tax offenders.

The public protector also found Pillay was appointed to the position without the relevant qualifications.

She gave President Cyril Ramaphosa 30 days to institute disciplinary action against Gordhan and the police 60 days to investigate the pair's criminal conduct.

Gordhan's spokesperson Adrian Lackay said while they respect the Constitution, the minister recorded his serious misgivings about the public protector, her conduct and her partiality.

“The constitution requires the public protector to conduct herself independently and in a dignified manner.”

Meanwhile, Pillay's lawyers said in her investigation she ignored important bits of evidence.

“The Chapter 9 institution is important, we have no problem with that. We have a problem with the way matters are being handled. The court is the correct place to ventilate these issues. The court will see the facts, there are so many facts.”

Lackay said their lawyers are studying Mkhwebane's report and will submit court papers next week.

(Edited by Refilwe Pitjeng)