Chris Pappas broke rules with farm murder statement - KZN Committee

NN Sibhidla-Saphetha expresses shock at DA MPL's claim that SAPS also wants farm murders declared hate crime


The Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development Honourable Ntombikayise Sibhidla-Saphetha has learnt with shock and dismay about the sensational statement issued by the Democratic Alliance’s committee member Honourable Chris Pappas.

Committee members were shocked that Hon Pappas had released a statement even before the committee could take resolutions on the matter.

Earlier today Agriculture and Rural Development Portfolio Committee held a joint meeting with Community Safety Portfolio Committee to receive a report from the South African Police Services’ Rural Safety Strategy.

Department of Community Safety was led by MEC Bheki Ntuli accompanied by SAPS’ General Jula and Brigadier Kheswa. Both the department and SAPS explained in detail challenges facing rural communities including farm labour tenants and both black and white farmers.

The meeting was convened by Honourable Sibhidla-Saphetha in her capacity as the Chairperson of Agriculture and Rural Development and Honourable Mthethwa who is the Chairperson of Community Safety Portfolio Committee. Mthethwa was unable to attend because of other commitments but Members of the Community Safety Portfolio Committee were in attendance.

The Committee has resolved to institute an investigation into the conduct of Honourable Pappas for violating the Legislature’s standing Rules.

Rule 153 clearly states that only the Chairperson of a committee may make media statement and broadcast or internet and other electronic publications on behalf of a committee.

The Rule further adds that Media Statements, broadcasts, internet or other electronic publications, whether made by the Chairperson pursuant to sub-rule(1) or by individual Members may not:

i) Misrepresent any proceedings or reports of a committee or any documents, evidence, submissions or information before a committee or the views of other Members; or

ii) Purport to represent the views or a report of a committee where it does not.

Committee Members were shocked at Pappas’ misrepresentations of the committee deliberations including his assertion that “the DA is pleased to have the support of the SAPS in its campaign to declare farm murders a hate crime”.

The committee has resolved to investigate the contents of Pappas’ statement and take appropriate action. Once the committee has taken resolutions on this matter it will make these available to the public.

Issued by the Chairperson of the KZN Legislature’s Portfolio Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development Hon NN Sibhidla-Saphetha, 11 August 2020