“The attacks on me are only meant to create a dark cloud over this office and myself, especially on the question of credibility.

Public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane has complained to National Assembly speaker Thandi Modise about “attacks” on her by politicians and also asked for protection from MPs.

Mkhwebane told the Sunday Times on Friday that she had written a letter to Modise, requesting the speaker’s intervention because, as public protector, she continued to face fierce criticism from opposition MPs and even some ANC figures.

Mkhwebane wanted Modise to intervene because there had been suggestions by some MPs that she was incompetent and playing ANC factional politics. She said the accusations were “without basis”.

“The public protector reports to the National Assembly and I am saying I need [Modise] as well to intervene because we cannot allow members of parliament and those of the executive to behave like this,” said Mkhwebane.

“The attacks on me are only meant to create a dark cloud over this office and myself, especially on the question of credibility, and it is driven by people with their own agenda and want to create a narrative that this public protector does not know what she is doing.”

Modise has referred to the justice and correctional services portfolio committee a DA request that an inquiry be instituted into Mkhwebane’s fitness to hold office. It has yet to be processed.

Mkhwebane is scheduled to face MPs for the first time in the new parliament on Wednesday, when she will present her office’s strategic plan.

She also said she had written to President Cyril Ramaphosa, asking him to reprimand minerals & energy minister Gwede Mantashe for publicly attacking her. Last month Mantashe said Mkhwebane had “occupied a political space that does not belong to her”. The criticism followed her investigation of a R500,000 donation to Ramaphosa’s ANC presidential campaign in 2017.

Mkhwebane said she would not sit back while she was being “unfairly” attacked by politicians for doing her work.

“People accuse me of many things without any basis; people like Mantashe. I wrote to the president saying, you must act because I cannot accept this.”

On Friday, Mkhwebane issued another damning report against public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan.

She found that Gordhan had acted in breach of the constitution in his role in the formation of a South African Revenue Service (Sars) “rogue unit” during his term as Sars commissioner. Gordhan said he would take the report on judicial review.

He has also instituted a similar court process over Mkhwebane’s report on the payment of early retirement benefits to former Sars deputy commissioner Ivan Pillay.

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'The attacks on me are only meant to create a dark cloud over this office and myself, especially on the question of credibility. Public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane has complained to National Assembly speaker Thandi Modise about 'attacks' on her by politicians and also asked for protection from MPs. Mkhwebane told the...