Economy

Public Protector Mkhwebane accused of collusion - SARB

Public Protector Mkhwebane accused of collusion - SARB”

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane instructed lawmakers in a June 19 report to amend the constitution to make the bank focus on the "socioeconomic well-being of the citizens" rather than inflation.

Absa is now owned by Barclays Africa Group and Mkhwebane said Barclays Africa had to pay 1.1 billion rand ($85 million).

SARB spokesperson Jabulani Sikhakhane confirmed that SARB filed the new affidavit on Monday, in which the bank indicates that Mkhwebane had met with the Presidency and the State Security Agency to amend the Reserve Bank's Constitutional mandate to protect the currency.

Mkhwebane did not disclose her meeting with the Presidency on June 7 "to discuss the new remedial action in her final report", the affidavit said, describing the her failure to do so as a "glaring omission". "This attack is evidence of bias or at least a reasonable apprehension of bias on the part of the Public Protector".

De Jager says that this shows that the matter had turned from investigating the CIEX report to an attack on the Reserve Bank.

The remedial action was not related to the primary investigation either.

The 96-year-old bank has become a scapegoat for the economic woes of Africa's most-industrialized economy, which had its second recession in nearly a decade this year. Johannes de Jager, from the Reserve Bank said that the Public Protector revealed a number of records and documents in the run up to the Bankorp review application.

No other party, including the Reserve Bank, was privy to this aspect of the report prior to its release.

The EyeWitness report also states that Mkhwebane met with the State Security Agency and while in the briefing asked or discussed how vulnerable they were.

She said, "nothing is stopping the public protector to meet any person, including the President or SSA".



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