Parliament not part of any 'plot' to discredit Gigaba‚ says Mthembu

06 November 2018 - 14:43 By Thabo Mokone
ANC chief whip Jackson Mthembu.
ANC chief whip Jackson Mthembu.
Image: Freddy Mavunda/Financial Mail

ANC chief whip Jackson Mthembu says parliamentary committees will continue do their oversight on ministers and government departments "without any fear or favour”.

Mthembu made the comments after embattled home affairs minister Malusi Gigaba claimed that the portfolio committees on home affairs and public enterprises were part of a political campaign to discredit him.

Speaking to journalists following a special caucus meeting‚ which was addressed by President Cyril Ramaphosa‚ Mthembu said while the issue of Gigaba was not discussed during their gathering on Wednesday‚ parliamentary structures were not part of any political agenda.

Gigaba has recently been under pressure in parliament as the home affairs committee continues to ask him tough questions about his role in allowing the wealthy Oppenheimer family to operate a private landing terminal at OR Tambo International Airport.

A draft report by the public enterprises committee on the Eskom inquiry has also recommended that Gigaba should be among 44 people that must be criminally investigated for corruption at Eskom.

Mthembu said if Gigaba had any evidence of anyone using parliamentary committees to tarnish his name‚ he should have reported the matter to him.

"The committees of parliament are not part of any plot. We want to make that clear. We do our work without any fear or favour. Nobody has brought any such insinuation before the chief whip‚" said Mthembu.

"If there were such allegations that any of our colleagues would have noticed‚ the first port of call would have been the chief whip of the majority party. So I'm not aware that any of our committees‚ when they do their work‚ they are doing such work as part of any plot. We're doing our work because we've got a responsibility to hold members of the executive accountable."

Turning to internal party matters‚ ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule said Ramaphosa had reported to caucus that the party’s national executive committee had resolved at its meeting over the weekend that "pre and post" Nasrec factions were no longer allowed to meet to discuss the running of the organisation without reporting to party structures.

Magashule said Ramaphosa‚ in his address to caucus‚ had focused on the "unity and renewal" of the ANC so that they could win next year's general elections with an increased majority.