Tainted names on list for key oversight roles

Staff Writer | Jun 20, 2019
African National Congress (ANC) chief whip Pemmy Majodina has put forward the names of party members facing allegations of involvement in state capture as chairpersons and whips of parliamentary oversight committees.

Faith Muthambi, Mosibenzi Zwane, Bongani Bongo and Supra Mahumapelo are the most notable among the compromised individuals recommended for key positions in parliament.

Muthambi and Zwane have been implicated at the state capture commission of inquiry. Muthambi was also a key figure in the destruction wrought by former SABC chief operations officer, Hlaudi Motsoeneng. Bongo is accused of trying to bribe the evidence leader in parliament’s inquiry into Eskom. Mahumapelo was forced to resign as premier of the North West after violent protests in the province.

They have been nominated for the chairs of the portfolio committees on justice, transport, tourism and home affairs respectively.

The final noteworthy inclusion is Tina Joemat-Pettersson, who sold off South Africa’s oil reserves without authority and received a R2.1 million once-off gratuity when she resigned. She’s been nominated as chair for the police committee.

Majodina insisted that MPs who had allegations against them had been cleared by the ANC’s integrity commission.

The Sunday Times reported that ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule selected the nominees for committees without permission from the party’s leadership. He was also accused of selecting only those sympathetic to him.

However, Magashule has said the list of nominees was the result of ANC officials’ collective decisions. Nominations were postponed last week because the ANC needed to consult its alliance (South African Communist Party and Cosatu) partners.

It is understood that the original list of nominees was changed at the meeting with the Alliance secretariat – but, rather than being removed from the list, individuals were simply shifted to other portfolios. 

Like Majodina, Magashule has said the nominees were cleared of misconduct by the ANC’s integrity commission and could not be considered guilty unless proved to be so by a court of law.

These appointments, which reflect the worst of the Zuma era, also reflect badly not just on the ANC, but on President Cyril Ramaphosa. At best, he has no power in the matter and, at worst, he agrees with the choices made.

 

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