Outgoing South African Public Protector Thuli Madonsela says a sound democracy is based on strong independent public institutions. She was speaking at a press conference organised by the Law Society of Botswana on Friday. She was also guest speaker at the society’s Gala Dinner.
She is of the view that a strong and independent legal profession is an important pillar of sustainable democracy.
Madonsela spoke of the importance of having a strong and independent institution in any democratic set-up.
“When the people are governed that means they are involved in determining their future. It means they are involved in determining who will be the few they will entrust with their collective power and resources. It also means that those who are entrusted with power and the resources will be accountable to the majority and make sure that they handle the power and resources with care because it does not belong to them but to the majority of the people,” said Madonsela.
Madonsela said it was important to have institutions that ensure accountability and continuous involvement of the people. She said in modern states those public institutions are entrenched in the constitution.
“Public institutions act as a second eye, pick up the spots where government missed and act where government and public link seem to be interrupted. Public institutions are there to close those gaps,” said Madonsela.
Madonsela said she was not a card-carrying member of the African National Congress and would not recommend that anyone appointed as a public protector should belong to any political party. “If they are a card carrying member of any political party they shouldn’t be active in politics,” said Madonsela.
Madonsela is defined as a fearless corruption fighter. Her office investigated the security upgrades at President Jacob Zuma’s private home in Nkandla. She took on the first citizen and most powerful person in South Africa and won.
After the case South African media reported that her life might be in danger but Madonsela told Botswana media last Friday that she feared nothing and only God could take life. She says when that time came it would be her time to die.