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COPE disturbed by attack on Public Protector

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The Congress of the People was “disturbed” by the malicious and senseless attacks on Public Protector Thuli Madonsela, the party said on Saturday.

“It is our view, when an office such as… the public protector is under attack, then we must know that our democracy is seriously under threat,” spokesman Dennis Bloem said in a statement.

“Not long ago Adv Thuli Madonsela was branded as a CIA spy by the deputy minister of defence. Now this latest attack from faceless sources, who also claim she is a CIA spy.”

On Friday spy claims against Madonsela, Julius Malema, Lindiwe Mazibuko, and Joseph Mathunjwa were dismissed as rubbish, according to their comments published by Beeld on Friday.

“A grade nine pupil could see it is rubbish,” said Madonsela, after the State Security Agency (SSA) issued a statement on Thursday saying it was probing spying claims against the four.

SSA spokesman Brian Dube said allegations against them led the agency to, and other social media platforms.

Madonsela said she would lodge a formal complaint against the SSA and ask it to withdraw the statement.

She said it was “interesting” that it surfaced days before President Jacob Zuma answered questions in Parliament.

Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema said: “I have never heard such madness in my life… Those people are clowns. Our biggest problem is that our ‘intelligence’ is not intelligent.”

Mathunjwa, president of the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu), said it was “rubbish” and a “waste of state resources” to investigate such allegations.

Mazibuko, former Democratic Alliance parliamentary leader who is studying at Harvard, tweeted: “It’s pretty embarrassing that a SA cabinet minister would issue a press statement responding to a false blog post from the lunatic fringe” followed by a “sad face” emoticon.

Cope challenged anybody who made such allegations to come forward with proof and evidence.

“For now we view these allegations as malicious and baseless,” Bloem said.

“It’s not a secret that there are people who are working day and night to remove Adv Madonsela from her position.”

Cope assured the public protector that the party had full confidence and trust in her, and in her office.

” We call upon all South Africans to rise up, and defend our public protector and our democracy,” he said. SAPA

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