Helen Zille lambasted Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane and her findings that the Western Cape Premier’s efforts to obtain tablets from the education department for her son and mathematics teacher, Paul Maree, breached executive ethics.
Below are some of Helen Zille’s quotes on the matter.
“The Public Protector has, once again, reflected her severely limited understanding of the Constitution and the law, and I will, yet again, be taking her finding against me on review to the High Court.” – Helen Zille, TimesLIVE, 19 December 2018
“Apart from the legal errors in the report, part of the remedial action proposed is also unlawful. This is another reason why I will take the report on a full review.” – Helen Zille, SowetanLIVE, 19 December 2018
“Insofar as there may have been a perception of a conflict of interest, I fulfilled the requirements of the law in mitigating it.” – Helen Zille, Politicsweb, 19 December 2018
“I wish to stress that if I faced the same situation today, as I did then, in 2014, I would do exactly the same because it was the right thing to do. The director-general of the province, Advocate Brent Gerber, would also do the same thing again, because it was entirely lawful, constitutional, and appropriate in the circumstances.” – Helen Zille, TimesLIVE, 19 December 2018
“I thought it would be a pity if they did not go ahead, particularly for the learners. I mentioned this to the director-general of the province at my normal weekly meeting where I raise a range of public queries I have received. The DG reminded me that the Western Cape education department had acquired tablets precisely for this kind of usage, in a Cabinet mandated program, and that they were due to be delivered at the beginning of the fourth term.” – Helen Zille, SowetanLIVE, 19 December 2018
“I asked whether they were potentially available for use during the holidays for the free matric mathematics revision, which would be in everyone’s interests, especially the learners. On inquiring, the DG established that 150 had already arrived and would be available through the Western Cape Education Department.” – Helen Zille, SowetanLIVE, 19 December 2018
“Everyone benefited. There was no cost involved, no conflict of interest involved, and the feedback was very good.” – Helen Zille, Politicsweb, 19 December 2018
“The law and the Public Service Commission distinguishes between a conflict of interest [where a public interest contradicts a private interest], and a congruence of interest, where there is no conflict involved. The latter was the case in this situation.” – Helen Zille, TimesLIVE, 19 December 2018