Zuma appoints new Public Protector

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma has appointed human rights lawyer Advocate Thulisile Madonsela as the country's new Public Protector.

Madonsela replaces Advocate Lawrence Mushwana, who left the position last Friday after serving out his even-year term.

A special parliamentary committee recommended Madonsela to be the next public protector after a week of candidate interviews

Commenting on the appointment, Zuma said Madonsela takes on an important responsibility, having to protect South Africans against any abuse of power by state organs or officials.

"She will need to ensure that this office continues to be accessible to ordinary citizens and undertakes its work without fear or favour," Zuma said.

He thanked Mushwana, for the excellent service he had rendered the country.

An advocate with extensive experience in constitutional, human rights and equality law, Madonsela was most recently a full-time member of the South African Law Reform Commission.

As a member of a judicial transformation task team Madonsela helped draft bills and a strategic plan for transforming the justice system and state legal services as well as the Victim's Charter and gender and employment equity policy.

The Office of the Public Protector is an independent and impartial institution established in terms of Chapter 9 of the Constitution to strengthen constitutional democracy by conducting investigations into alleged improper conduct by organs of State, facilitate resolution of disputes, and report and recommend remedial action.