“We are not taking the public protector to court. We want her report to undergo a judicial review, possibly in the High Court in Pretoria,” acting government spokeswoman Phumla Williams said on Thursday (15/05/2014).
“I don’t know when this will take place. We will prepare our arguments which will be given in court.”
The cluster believed Madonsela’s report lacked clarity in some areas, and her findings were “irrational, contradictory and… informed by material errors of law”.
“It is the ministers’ view that the public protector’s report and the investigation she conducted trespass on the separation of powers doctrine and… section 198(d) of the Constitution which vests national security in Parliament and [the] national executive,” she said.
Madonsela, in her report, found that President Jacob Zuma and his family had unduly benefited from R246 million security upgrades to his private Nkandla homestead in KwaZulu-Natal, which included a swimming pool, a cattle kraal, and an amphitheatre.
She recommended, among other things, that he pay back a portion of the money.
Zuma has said previously that he will await the outcome of another probe by the Special Investigating Unit before responding to the matter.
Madonsela later issued a press release stating she believed the ministers intended judicial review was premature.
“The architecture of our constitutional democracy as we understand it requires that the matter be debated in Parliament first. Should there be no common understanding, the matter can then be taken to court,” she said.
She added she could not imagine any court of law finding in the Ministers’ favour. – Sapa