Parly Committee Chairperson candidates: ANC factional fault lines made clear
19 June 2019
The Democratic Alliance (DA) has taken note of the African National Congress (ANC) announcement of their candidates for chairpersons of portfolio committees.
The ANC’s candidates for some of the committees are frankly shocking and shows a complete disregard for the people of South Africa. Supra Mahumapelo, a Gupta acolyte who was basically chased out of the North West province has now been slated for the Tourism committee. Faith Muthambi, who helped to run the SABC into the ground is now about to be put in charge of oversight over municipalities. Other strong Zupta allies alleged to have played instrumental roles in the capturing of the state, such as Mosebenzi Zwane and Bongani Bongo, are now in prime position to help capture Parliament.
It is clear that the Ramaphosa’s attempts a forging a new dawn are being hampered by the ANC’s factional fault lines – with Ramaphosa on one side and Ace Magashule on the other. The Magashule faction won this fight, and will do all it can to undermine all attempts at building a better South Africa for all.
The portfolio committees play a crucial role within Parliament, and are key to holding government departments and ministers to account. It is here where financial statements, performance plans, and annual reports are interrogated and where government department heads and the boards of state-owned entities are called to account for their actions.
Without rigorous and vigilant portfolio committees, Parliament’s work is hamstrung. The 6th Parliament can not afford to fall into the same rubber-stamp role as the 4th and 5thParliaments, which were rightly criticised by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo at the Commission of Enquiry into State Capture as failing in their constitutional duty of holding the executive to account.
The DA will therefore carefully consider putting forward alternative candidates to head up portfolio committees, in order to fight this attempt at once again capturing Parliament.
The members of the 6th Parliament have an unique opportunity to change the direction in which South Africa moves in going forward. Committee chairpersons play an important role in this regard, and the DA will work hard to make sure we have credible candidates in place who will not hesitate to speak truth to power and do what is necessary.
Issued by John Steenhuisen, Chief Whip of the Official Opposition, 19 June 2019