Premier Oscar Mabuyane to seek judicial review on public protector report

Eastern Cape premier Oscar Mabuyane
Eastern Cape premier Oscar Mabuyane
Image: Alan Eason

Eastern Cape premier Oscar Mabuyane will legally challenge public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s report into, among other things, the R450,000 used for the renovation of his East London home.

The report, according to Mabuyane, ignored substantial information that sought to respond to the allegations against him.

On Friday, Mkhwebane released a report on her team’s investigation into how money meant to be used for the transportation of people to a memorial service for the late Winnie Madikizela-Mandela in 2018 was spent.

Her investigation came after Mthombeni Projects director Lonwabo Bam came forward in 2019, saying he had submitted a R1.1m invoice to the municipality though he had not done work for it.

The invoice, according to Bam, was made to appear that he had supplied transportation for Madikizela-Mandela's memorial service.

Mkhwebane's report states:"Mabuyane irregularly and improperly benefitted from R450,000 of the amount of R1.1m which were public funds that went towards the renovation of his private house as set out in the evidence”.

A statement from Mabuyane’s office on Friday afternoon states that he had instructed his legal representatives to take the report on judicial review.

“He has further instructed his legal counsel to urgently interdict the implementation of the remedial actions.

“The premier maintains his public statement issued on the matter in 2019 and maintains his position that he was never involved in any acts of fraud or corruption,” the statement reads.

“The premier remains unwavering in his commitment to fight corruption and maladministration.”

Bam alleged he was instructed by ANC provincial treasurer Babalo Madikizela to submit an invoice to the municipality.

When the money was paid to Bam, he paid R450,000 to the contractor working on Mabuyane’s home renovations, allegedly on Madikizela’s instruction.

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