Articles on Public Protector

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South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma (left), who is also the president of the governing ANC, and his deputy Cyril Ramaphosa. Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko

South Africa’s ANC can only be salvaged by leadership of epic ethical proportions

After two decades of political dominance, the electoral performance of the ANC is at its lowest since it became the governing party of South Africa in 1994. But is the party really unraveling?
Suppoters of outgoing South African public protector, Thuli Madonsela, outside her offices ahead of her last media briefing. Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko

Lesser-known stories of how ordinary South Africans felt the effect of an active public protector

Far from the limelight, South Africa's public protector has been instrumental in assisting individuals who grapple with unfair treatment from government departments and other public institutions.
South African President Jacob Zuma. He has survived a bid to have him removed and might strike back. Philimon Bulawayo/Reuters

Zuma’s refusal to quit puts South Africa’s economy on an even weaker footing

All eyes are on the next move from President Jacob Zuma after he survived a bid from senior ANC colleagues to remove him. The fallout is expected to be focused on the economic cluster of government.
Former South African president Thabo Mbeki at May Day celebrations in 2003. He failed to challenge a decision by the ANC to recall him in 2008. EPA

Thabo Mbeki undermined South Africa’s constitution by putting his party first

Former South Africa's President, Thab Mbeki, has made a remarkable intervention that condemns parliament's failure to act against President Jacob Zuma. But he is eight years too late.
The criminal case against South African finance minister Pravin Gordhan, right, is an example of President Jacob Zuma’s abuse of state institutions. GCIS

How Zuma has used the capture of South Africa’s state institutions to stay in power

The use of the prosecuting authority and the police in ANC succession struggles has a long history. What's different in the Zuma era is the symbiosis between elite police and the prosecution service.
South African President Jacob Zuma. What next? Reuters/Philimon Bulawayo

Zuma and ANC run out of road as bad news piles up

South African President Jacob Zuma's days of spinning out court cases indefinitely and at taxpayers' expense may soon come to an end -- possibly his worst news in a week of bad news.
Protesters decry the decision by the South African Broadcasting Corporation not to air scenes of violent protest. Reuters/Mike Hutchings

Questions that need to be asked to save South Africa’s public broadcaster

There were high hopes that the SABC would become a true public broadcaster after the end of apartheid when it was used ruthlessly as a propaganda machine. But those hopes have since been dashed.
Supporters angered by the ANC’s choice of a mayoral candidate went on the rampage in Tshwane, South Africa, . Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko

Political violence in South Africa points to rising tensions in the ANC

The increase in rioting ahead of municipal elections in South Africa, such as that in Pretoria, suggests that the country's general election in 2019 could be more violent than previous elections.
President Jacob Zuma surprised South Africans by offering to pay back public money spent on his private home. Reuters/Nic Bothma

Zuma’s about-turn suggests South Africa faces another unhinged political year

Jacob Zuma has backtracked on two major decisions in under two months – first after he fired his finance minister; now he says he’ll pay back public money spent on his lavish Nkandla homestead.
South African President Jacob Zuma, right, listens to Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng ahead of Zuma’s second inauguration in Pretoria. Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko

Are judges in South Africa under threat or do they complain too much?

Tensions are probably inevitable in any constitutional democracy that empowers the courts to overrule the executive and legislature. But, judges are worried cabinet undermines the rule of law.

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