The public protector, Thuli Madonsela, is tough, fearless and respected. She takes her office very seriously and is determined to carry out her mandate to the best of her ability – a stance that sometimes sees her going head to head with government figures.
Madonsela and government ministers were recently involved in a highly publicised dispute around the public protector’s investigation into upgrades – costing over R200-million of taxpayers’ money, spending that remains highly questionable – at President Jacob Zuma’s residence at Nkandla in KwaZulu-Natal.
The ministers of the security cluster – police, justice, intelligence and defence – who had been given a sneak peek at Madonsela’s report, tried to delay the release of the findings, but later withdrew their court application.
Madonsela has reiterated that co-operation with the government remains a priority, and that her office will deal appropriately with all the concerns put forward by security cluster ministers.
For maintaining the integrity and mandate of the office of the public protector, our corruption watch hero of the week is Advocate Thuli Madonsela.