Public Protector addresses Jewish Synagogue

Public Protector Adv Thuli Madonsela has called on the faith-based community to carry on generating values that will improve the societal moral fibre as part of fighting corruption. She said the sector plays a vital role in strengthening democracy and promoting the rule of law.

Speaking at the third annual Shavout Public Lecture of the Beit Emanuel Progressive Synagogue in Johannesburg on Tuesday evening, the Public Protector urged religious groups to develop values that would ensure that people grow up knowing, among other things, that power must be used for the purpose it was bestowed and not for the benefit of those entrusted with it or those they prefer.

“The faith community must help develop values where the whistleblower will not be the enemy and the corrupt will be the ones we condemn,” she said, delivering the lecture which focused on the role of her office in combating corruption in government.

The evening marked the beginning of the Jewish festival of Shavout, an ancient harvest carnival that celebrates God’s giving of divine teachings to the Jewish people.

The Public Protector noted that the country had a sound national architecture comprising factors and role players that position democracy for effective combating of corruption in state affairs.

She indicated that such architecture includes the Constitution, legal framework, rule of law, independent court system, institutions supporting democracy, political will and transparency anchored in freedom of expression, incorporating a free media.

Rabbi Robert Ash commended the Public Protector for the work her office had done to exact accountability and integrity within state affairs since assuming office 18 months ago.

The leaders of the Synagogue emphasised the need for the Public Protector and other oversight bodies to remain steadfast in “speaking truth to power.”

The Public Protector further invited the faith community to continue working with her office to strengthen accountability in the conduct of state affairs.

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Kgalalelo Masibi
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Published Date: 
Wednesday, June 8, 2011