Concourt dismissal confirms Gigaba lied under oath

The Democratic Alliance (DA) welcomes the decision of the Constitutional Court to dismiss the appeal of Minister Malusi Gigaba against the finding that he lied under oath and thus violated the Constitution.

This judgment comes just one day after the Public Protector recommended that president Cyril Ramaphosa take disciplinary action against the Minister for the same infraction.

The judgment also removes any basis on which the Minister may hope to be vindicated and leaves no doubt that his conduct merits the harshest sanction.

We must remember that this judgment stems from a judicial challenge to an attempt by Gigaba to dishonour a contractual agreement with Fireblade to the benefit of the Gupta family.

The DA will now submit parliamentary questions to determine exactly how much this futile exercise by Gigaba will cost the taxpayer.

The failure of the president to dismiss Gigaba will mark his definitive vote in favour of dishonesty and corruption.

This is a watershed moment wherein the president’s ‘New Dawn’ is being put to the test.

Our message to Ramaphosa is clear: fire Gigaba for the sake of all South Africans who have endured the scourge of corruption for too long and begin to put an end to the State Capture project once and for all.

DA lays perjury charges against Dodging Dlamini for allegedly lying to ConCourt

Please find attached English and isiZulu soundbites by the DA Shadow Minister of Social Development, Bridget Masango MP.

Today the Democratic Alliance (DA) laid charges of perjury against Minister Bathabile Dlamini at the Johannesburg Central Police Station.


The charges follow the damning judgement in which the Constitutional Court requested that the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) consider whether Dlamini should be prosecuted for lying under oath during her testimony at the Judge Bernard Ngoepe Inquiry into the social grants crisis.

While the NPA considers charging her, it is vital that all avenues to hold her to account are used to make sure she will not continue to dodge facing the consequences of putting the lives of millions at risk.

Retired Judge Bernard Ngoepe, who lead the Inquiry into her role in the 2017 social grants debacle, offered a scathing assessment of Dlamini’s testimony. Judge Ngoepe’s findings strongly suggested that “some of Minister Dlamini’s evidence under oath in the affidavits before this [Constitutional] Court and orally before the Inquiry was false” and that the Minister may have “misled the Court to protect herself from the consequences of her behaviour”.

Last week, the Constitutional Court branded the Minister as “reckless and grossly negligent”. Dlamini clearly has no place in government.

It is clear from her actions that she does not care for the millions of vulnerable South Africans who depend on social grants every month just to feed their loved ones.

President Cyril Ramaphosa is harbouring individuals in his Cabinet who are Constitutionally and morally bankrupt and have very little regard for the laws and people of the country. It is for this reason the DA has given President Ramaphosa until Friday, 5 October, to remove Dlamini from his Cabinet.

It is now in the hands of the South African Police Services to investigate these charges against Minister Dlamini and up to the NPA to ensure that she is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

Dodging Dlamini can no longer run away from accountability. The DA will continue to explore all possible avenues to ensure that she has her day in court.

Please download pictures here and here.

DA gives President Ramaphosa one week to fire Dlamini and Gigaba

The following statement was delivered today by Democratic Alliance (DA) Leader, Mmusi Maimane MP, at a media briefing in Parliament. Maimane was joined by DA Shadow Minister of Social Development, Bridget Masango MP.

The Department of Social Development is perhaps one of the most important in government, as it is tasked with the welfare of the most vulnerable people in our society – young children, the elderly, orphans, the disabled and foster children.

It should be a source of national shame that such an important department was ever run by a Minister like Bathabile Dlamini, and this shame is compounded by the fact that she now still remains in Cabinet in a position of important responsibility for championing women’s issues.

Yesterday’s scathing Constitutional Court judgement against Minister Bathabile Dlamini, in her capacity as then Minister of Social Development, confirmed that President Cyril Ramaphosa now harbours two Ministers in his Cabinet who have lied under oath.

These are not allegations. They are the unanimous findings of the Constitutional Court and the North Gauteng High Court respectively.

It is truly an exceptional circumstance to have two members of the Executive found to have lied under oath in court cases relating to their work in government. This is intolerable, and both of these Ministers should be dismissed from Cabinet.

I have written to President Ramaphosa asking him to fire Ministers Gigaba and Dlamini before 5 October. Should he fail to do so, we will approach the Courts to seek an order to compel him to act to uphold the honour of high executive honour and remove these two perjurers from his Cabinet.

President Ramaphosa has spoken often and vocally about his desire to act meaningfully to clean up his administration. This is a perfect opportunity for him to show real commitment to his words, and to act to uphold the integrity of the Executive.

Bathabile Dlamini

Bathabile Dlamini has failed in her job, having been directly responsible for the social grants crisis, which the DA believes she purposefully manufactured to ensure CPS would continue to distribute grants, no doubt for her own personal gain.

Dlamini was determined to deliberately derail the entire process of SASSA procuring an alternative service provider, all in a bid to ensure that the CPS contract could be extended over and over again.

Retired Judge Bernard Ngoepe offered a scathing assessment of Dlamini’s testimony during the Inquiry into her role in the 2017 social grants debacle.

Yesterday’s unanimous judgment by the Constitutional Court found that (par 12): “(…) at best for her, her conduct was reckless and grossly negligent,” and that (par 15) “the Minister misled the Court to protect herself from the consequences of her behaviour.”

In the view of the court (par 15), she “used her position as Minister of the Department to place herself between constitutionally enshrined rights and those entitled to them.”

Minister Dlamini has time and again proven that she is incapable of governing a department and continuously failed in delivering on her mandate of protecting the most vulnerable in our society.

It is obvious that Dlamini is not fit for office and her contempt for the highest court in our country is matched only by her contempt for the most vulnerable people in our country.

Bathabile Dlamini is an embarrassment to the government and the country, and besmirches the office of Minister. The President should dismiss her immediately.

Where or not he does, the DA will lay criminal charges against Dlamini for committing perjury by lying under oath to the Constitutional Court.

We will also lay a complaint against Minister Dlamini, in terms of section 4 of the Executive Ethics Act. Section 2 of the Executive Ethics Act forbids “Cabinet members, Deputy Ministers and MECs from…exposing themselves to any situation involving the risk of a conflict between their official responsibilities and their private interests; (iv) using their position or any information entrusted to them, to enrich themselves or improperly benefit any other person; and (v) acting in a way that may compromise the credibility or integrity of their office or of the government.” As is stipulated by the Act, the complaint will be laid with the Public Protector, Adv. Busisiwe Mkhwebane.

Malusi Gigaba

Minister Malusi Gigaba is directly implicated in bypassing South African law to ensure that the Guptas were given citizenship when they were not entitled to it.

In February this year, in the matter of Fireblade Aviation (Pty) Ltd v Minister of Home Affairs, Judge Neil Tuchten of the North Gauteng High Court found that Gigaba, when he was still Home Affairs Minister, “deliberately told untruths under oath” and that “he committed a breach of the constitution so serious that I could characterise it as a violation”.

The DA has already laid a formal complaint with the Public Protector requesting that she investigate Minister Gigaba’s conduct in the matter in light of the serious findings of the High Court. We will continue our engagements with the Public Protector to ensure that her investigation into Minister Gigaba is now expedited so that he can be held to account.

However, it seems that there has been little progress in this matter and Adv. Mkhwebane is dragging her feet. The DA reminds her that she has a duty to investigate without fear or favour and to ensure that those in high office uphold their oaths of office.

We will also follow this up now with perjury charges against Minister Gigaba.

The fact is that the ANC have taken South Africa down the wrong path. Corruption is rife and there is a lack of respect for the law and the requirements of high office.

President Ramaphosa has pledged to turn this around. Now is the time for him to show whether he really means in deed what he has said.

So far, he has often acted in the best interests of the unity of the ANC, instead of the best interests of the country. He must not defend these Ministers and protect their jobs in the interests of the ANC. He must fire these two liars now.

‘Dodging Dlamini’ is a threat to society’s most vulnerable and must be fired

The Constitutional Court ruling that former Minister of Social Development, Bathabile Dlamini, must pay 20% of the legal costs incurred relating to the social grants crisis shows that Dlamini cannot be trusted with championing the rights of the most vulnerable in society.

President Ramaphosa can no longer ignore this fact and would fire her immediately if he has any care for the millions of people she has already and will continue to endanger.

The Constitutional Court went so far as to say that Dlamini’s behaviour was “reckless and grossly negligent” and that a copy of the judgment should be sent to the National Director of Public Prosecutions to determine if Dodging Dlamini can be prosecuted for perjury if indeed she lied to the court.

Given this damning judgment, President Cyril Ramaphosa must fire Dlamini immediately from her position as Minister of Women in the Presidency. This appointment should not have happened in the first place given that she manufactured the social grants crisis, so she could benefit through the planned extension of the illegal CPS contract.

The ANC government protected and rewarded Dlamini for her role in the grants crisis, instead of holding her accountable. She was ultimately responsible for risking the livelihoods of 17 million South Africans who she should have protected, and her recklessness cannot be allowed to continue.

The ANC has protected its failing members for too long. South Africans can bring an end to this in the elections next year by voting for the DA.

DA to probe basis and details of Abrahams retirement

The DA has taken note of media reports indicating that former National Director of Public Prosecutions (“NDPP”), Advocate Shaun Abrahams, has retired. It is manifestly clear that this is a way for Advocate Abrahams to avoid the consequences of the damage he has wrought on the institution of the National Prosecuting Authority in the past three years.

The DA will therefore probe the rationale for the decision to grant him retirement, as well as the basis on which his benefits will be determined.

While employed as NDPP, Shaun Abrahams demonstrated that he is a deeply compromised individual with an extremely poor grasp of basic legal principles and that he has no respect for the rule of law. His time at the head of the NPA was marked by political persecutions and a weakening of the institution’s independence, which opened the door for the executive branch of the ANC government to exercise undue influence over prosecutions. He also oversaw an exodus of talented and qualified prosecutors who could no longer serve under his compromised leadership.

Earlier this month, his appointment as NDPP was set aside by the Constitutional Court, which court determined that he was never lawfully appointed.

The DA therefore believe that Advocate Abrahams’ retirement benefits should not be those that would be due to a retiring NDPP, but should instead be that attached to Advocate Abrahams’ last held position, that of a senior state advocate in the Priority Crimes Litigation department.

The DA will also question the rationale for Abrahams’ exit from the NPA being processed as a retirement. Ironically, one of the biggest blunders from Abrahams’ ill-fated stint as NDPP was the persecution of Minister Pravin Gordhan and senior SARS officials, Ivan Pillay and Oupa Magashule, over the alleged unlawful approval of Gordhan’s early retirement.

South Africans deserve a criminal justice system that is independent, just, and effective. The NPA under Abrahams was the exact opposite. His exit is a welcome close to an awful chapter. He will not be missed.

#ShaunAbrahams: DA calls on NPA head to be appointed by Parliament

The Democratic Alliance (DA) welcomes the Constitutional Court ruling today finding Shaun Abrahams’ appointment as National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) invalid. The Court found that the manner in which former NDPP Mxolisi Nxasana vacated office was Constitutionally invalid.

In December 2017, the North Gauteng High Court declared that former President Jacob Zuma’s decision to terminate Nxasana’s appointment as the head of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) unconstitutional. Furthermore, the High Court ordered then-Deputy President, Cyril Ramaphosa, to appoint a new NDPP as Zuma was too compromised.

The DA has propagated the view for some time that the appointment process regarding the NDPP should follow the concept of public and parliamentary involvement similar to the process of appointment of the Public Protector and the judiciary.  This would be a good time to revisit that option.

Zuma’s decision to appoint Abrahams as head of the NPA was nothing more than an attempt to prevent the prosecuting authority from reinstating the 783 counts of corruption, fraud, racketeering and money-laundering against him.

Parliament should play a central role in appointing the NDPP in order to prevent political influence over the NPA.

Furthermore, the DA welcomes the Court’s ruling that Section 12(6) of the NPA Act unconstitutional; this section determines that the President can suspend the NDPP for an indefinite period without pay.

The Court has given Parliament 18 months to remedy this defect. In the interim, the President will only be allowed to suspend the NDPP for a period of 6 months and the NDPP will receive a full salary in that period.

President Ramaphosa must stop evading the inevitable and should, with the participation of Parliament, appoint a credible and independent NDPP which will restore the public faith in the integrity of the NPA.

Mala Mala land deal: Portfolio Committee finally agrees to initiate forensic audit following DA’s proposal

The DA welcomes the multi-party Rural Development and Land Reform Portfolio Committee’s decision to initiate a forensic investigation into the Mala Mala land deal.

Mala Mala is South Africa’s most expensive land deal to date and has cost taxpayers R 1.1 billion. It was finalised and restored to the Nwandlamharhi Communal Property Association (CPA) in 2013/2014.

Both the Land Claims Court and High court ruled that the price envisioned for Mala Mala was excessive and not in the best interests of South Africans. However, the deal went through before the case reached the Constitutional Court and this needs to be investigated.

After the DA pushed for the Portfolio Committee to discuss the Mala Mala claim, a multi-party committee heard a presentation by the Land Claims Commission and the committee adopted the DA’s proposal to initiate proceedings for a forensic investigation by the Special Investigative Units.

The report presented to the committee detailed how the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform handled the Mala Mala deal and further detailed possible corruption currently within the CPA, but could not explain why the state originally opposed the proposed amount of R751 737 million but finally settled on the increased amount outside of the courts.

The High-level Panel report chaired by former President, Kgalema Motlanthe, specifically stated that the Mala Mala claim is part the issue of inconsistent prioritisation of land claims, with other older claims being held back.

Additionally the panel found that “the community, recently formed for the purpose of lodging the land claim, was also not in fact eligible for restitution, but this fact was ignored by the Mpumalanga Land Claims Commission, despite the findings of a historical research report that was paid for by the Commission.”

Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, through the Executive, must ensure that a forensic audit into Mala Mala is instituted so that any past or current corruption can be exposed.

The DA stands at the forefront of fighting corruption and ensuring that land claim beneficiaries actually benefit from progressive Land reform decisions.

Minister Gigaba must be summoned to account to Parliament for ignoring court order to reopen Refugee Centres

The below statement follows our oversight to the Cape Town Refugee Reception Office by the DA Shadow Minister of Home Affairs, Haniff Hoosen MP.

Please see video here. 

Today, the DA conducted an oversight visit to the Department of Home Affairs Cape Town office in the Foreshore. This office only processes asylum seeker permit renewals and does not take new applications as the Cape Town Refugee Reception office was closed, illegally, in 2012.

The DA spoke with some asylum seekers who shared their frustrations with the process as well as the conditions at the current premises which pose a health hazard to both asylum-seekers and staff. In such close quarters tensions often run high, in some instances, resulting in instances where female staffers said they felt threatened.Security has been a serious issue at the facility as the previous contract with the security company came to an end. This has forced staff to act as security guards to manage access control which puts their safety at risk.

Refugee reception Offices are meant to receive and process new applications from people who are seeking asylum in South Africa. They also renew asylum seeker permits while these applicants await decisions on their permanent applications.

In September 2017, the Supreme Court of Appeal found that the decision to close the Cape Town Refugee Reception Office was irrational and therefore ought to be reviewed and set aside.

The Department’s appeal to the Constitutional Court was dismissed in December 2017. And the Department of Home Affairs was ordered to re-open the Cape Town Office by 31 March 2018.

Not only has the Department failed to comply with this order but it has also failed to comply with another 2015 order to re-open the Port Elizabeth Refugee Reception Office.

Currently, there is a backlog of 140 000 appeal cases currently with the Department of Home Affairs which need to be finalised.

The DA will now write to the Chairperson of the Home Affairs Portfolio Committee, Lemias Mashile, to request that Home Affairs Minister, Malusi Gigaba, be summoned to account for why these reception centres have not been reopened and for his continued non-compliance with court orders.

Clearly, the failure by Minister Gigaba to obey the courts is compromising the ability of the Department ensure asylum applications are processed and finalised efficiently.

The continued failure of the Department essentially means that it is contributing to the issue of illegal immigration.

To address this, a DA government would immediately address the criteria for the appointment of Refugee Status Determination Officers, who process and make decisions on asylum applications, as well as increase support to these critical front-line decision-makers to ease the backlog.

Most importantly, a DA government would ensure that the Department is run efficiently, by suitably qualified officials and that resources are allocated to ensure that we solve the issue of illegal immigration rather than contributing to it.



DA approaches Constitutional Court to have Arthur Fraser’s appointment declared invalid

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has today filed papers (attached here and here) seeking exclusive jurisdiction, alternatively direct access to the Constitutional Court to have President Cyril Ramaphosa’s appointment of Arthur Fraser as National Commissioner of Correctional Services set aside with immediate effect. Fraser is a compromised individual who is wholly unfit to hold such a vital position within government, and as such the President erred in his appointment of such an individual.

In light of the damning and serious allegations against Fraser – including that he operated a secret and parallel intelligence service from his own home whilst working for the State Security Agency (SSA) and utilised millions of rands of public funds for personal gain – the President’s decision to appoint Fraser falls foul of the President’s own constitutional obligations. We had initially written to the President seeking answers as to why Fraser was appointed, and the rationale behind this appointment. The President has to date failed to answer these questions, and as such we have little option but to approach the court.

Our legal action seeks an order declaring that the President’s recent appointment of Arthur Fraser violated the President’s constitutional obligation to appoint a National Commissioner who is sufficiently conscientious, has enough credibility to do this important job effectively, and is of good character. Arthur Fraser fails every aspect of this test. In fact, his co-ordination of a parallel intelligence network should have been reason to fire him – not rehire him in a different capacity.

We therefore ask of the court to review and set aside the President’s decision to appoint Arthur Fraser as National Commissioner of Correctional Services on 17 April 2018.

Cyril Ramaphosa’s “New Dawn” has failed to stop the ANC’s long-standing practice of reshuffling compromised individuals within government departments. This practice must be abolished once and for all,  not carried out by the President. In the tight fiscal space our country is currently in, we cannot be wasting millions of rands of public money on dodgy individuals.

SASSA once again thrown a lifeline by ConCourt

Please find attached soundbites in isiZulu and English by DA Shadow Minister of Social Development, Bridget Masango MP.
The Constitutional Court’s decision today to grant SASSA’s application to extend the invalid CPS contract for another 6 months, is yet another lifeline for the failing agency.
Although the DA has always been resistant to the unlawful CPS contract, we respect the Court’s decision as it was ultimately made in the best interest of the almost 800 000 cash payment social grants beneficiaries.
The truth is that SASSA never had any contingency plans in place in the event the Constitutional Court refused this application. SASSA has essentially held a gun to the head of the Constitutional Court leaving it with no other option but to extend the unlawful contract with the parasitic CPS.
It is an indictment on SASSA that its affairs had to be overseen by the Courts. This is due to the poor management and planning on the part of the agency under former Social Development Minister, Bathabile Dlamini.
A report by the panel of experts appointed to oversee SASSA’s readiness to take over social grants warned of SASSA and Dlamini’s lack of cooperation and blatant delaying tactics in averting another social grants crisis.
This decision by the Court today has yet again averted a potential crisis but it is now time for SASSA to get its house in order and institutionalise the payment of social grants.
Further, the DA notes that the Constitutional Court has ordered CPS to pay back the R316 million payment it had received from SASSA in 2014, with interest. SASSA must immediately recover these monies without further delay as the unacceptably high instances of irregular expenditure in the department and its agencies must be brought to an end.
The DA will continue to monitor the situation and we maintain that all those involved in this avoidable crisis, including Dodging Dlamini, should be held personally liable for the legal costs.