Home South Africa DA lawyer says Mkhwebane’s suspension was not biased – SABC News

DA lawyer says Mkhwebane’s suspension was not biased – SABC News

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Lawyer Stephen Budlander, on behalf of the official opposition, the Democratic Alliance, argued that the timelines leading to the suspension of lawyer Busisiwe Mkhwebane were far from indicative of concerns of bias.

Budlender was arguing in the Constitutional Court, which is, among other things, hearing an application for leave to appeal against a decision by the Western Cape High Court which declared Mkhwebane’s dismissal as public protector invalid.

The court found that there was a reasonable apprehension of bias at the time of the decision.

Mkhwebane was suspended on June 9, just two days after she referred questions to the president about the Phala-Phala saga in which he was implicated.

Budlander said: “I accept that as a person who only knows these facts, I sent him questions on June 7, he suspended me on June 9, I accept that when you look at these facts in isolation, you have concerns of bias, but you can’t consider these facts in isolation. A reasonable, well-informed, thoughtful and objective observer does not start scheduling on June 7.”

He added: “A smart, well-informed, thoughtful and objective observer starts the timeline in March and understands what got us there. The same reasonable observer understands that the reason the president could not make a decision by May 26 is because he was not allowed to do so because he continued to receive commitments from the public defender’s request.”

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