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Mkhwebane to approach SCA to avoid paying legal costs in Estina matter

The High Court in Pretoria has dismissed Mkhwebane's application to appeal an earlier order that found her office liable for 85% of the DA and Casac's legal costs, ordering that she pays 7.5% out of her own pocket.

FILE: Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane said that she would petition the Supreme Court to hear her appeal in the Estina case to avoid paying legal costs. She said she was not surprised by the judge's decision.

The High Court in Pretoria has dismissed Mkhwebane's application to appeal an earlier order that found her office liable for 85% of the Democratic Alliance (DA) and Council for the Advancement of the South African Constitution’s (Casac) legal costs.

She was also ordered to pay 7.5% of the costs out of her own pocket.

Judge Ronel Tolmay found that Mkhwebane failed South Africans because of the manner in which she conducted her investigation into the Vrede dairy farm project.

MORE LEGAL WOES FOR MKHWEBANE

After being dismissed by the Public Protector in October, her former chief of operations Basani Baloyi approached the courts over her dismissal and Mkhwebane’s handling of some investigations.

On Thursday, Baloyi said they would be moving their case to a higher court after losing in the High Court in Pretoria. The court dismissed an application by the former COO to challenge her dismissal with costs.

However, no details were given about whether they would apply for leave to appeal or approach the Constitutional Court.

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