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Presidency hails CR17 ruling, says Public Protector's office failing miserably

In a scathing judgment, the court reviewed and set aside the findings in the Public Protector’s Bosasa report, describing them as fatally flawed.

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane. Picture: @PublicProtector/Twitter.

JOHANNESBURG - As the Presidency welcomed the Pretoria High Court judgment against the Public Protector as a resounding victory for President Cyril Ramaphosa, it also warned that the Chapter 9 institution was "failing miserably".

On Tuesday, the Pretoria High Court issued its judgment on the matter regarding the Public Protector’s adverse findings against Ramaphosa’s CR17 campaign, which included allegations of money laundering by the president.

In a scathing judgment, the court reviewed and set aside the findings in the Public Protector’s Bosasa report, describing them as fatally flawed.

The concerns expressed about the Public Protector’s office under the leadership of Busisiwe Mkhwebane were not limited to the Presidency.

WATCH: Court: Ramaphosa didn’t intentionally mislead Parliament on CR17 funding

The court said that she ran the risk of undermining the reasons for the founding of the institution while failing to meet her constitutional mandate.

The president’s lawyer, Peter Harris, said that these findings by the court about Mkhwebane would be a "joke" if they were not devastating to the country’s democracy.

"I think it's a very sad reflection on the current occupant of the office of the Public Protector because it's an office that has a fundamental role to play in our democracy."

Spokesperson for the office of the Public Protector, Oupa Segalwe: "We will wait for her to study the ruling and understand it."

The court not only found that Mkhwebane had no jurisdiction to investigate fundraising for the CR17 campaign but that she acted irrationally and recklessly.

Her office would also have to foot the legal bill of the president.