Nomvula Mokonyane withdraws her name from ANC MP list at last minute

The former minister declined to take up her role as chair of chairs

22 May 2019 - 10:03 By ANDISIWE MAKINANA
Nomvula Mokonyane will not be sworn in as MP on Wednesday.
Nomvula Mokonyane will not be sworn in as MP on Wednesday.
Image: GCIS

Outgoing environmental affairs minister Nomvula Mokonyane will not be sworn in as an MP as scheduled on Wednesday.

TimesLIVE has learnt that Mokonyane declined the offer to take up a seat in the National Assembly just hours before chief justice Mogoeng Mogoeng was to preside over the swearing-in of MPs.

Around 9.15am, ANC national spokesperson Pule Mabe said he was still verifying the information about Mokonyane's future. But sources close to the party were adamant that Mokonyane, who did not attend the party's first caucus meeting on Tuesday, was not coming back. The ANC's national executive committee had designated Mokonyane to become the National Assembly's chair responsible for portfolio committees, known as the chair of chairs.

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The ANC later confirmed that Mokonyane would not return to parliament as an MP, citing "family responsibilities" as one of the reasons.

In a statement, ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule said they received a request from Mokonyane to reconsider her deployment to the sixth parliament as house chair.

The deployment was finalised by the national officials and announced on Monday.

"Comrade Nomvula has since advised the ANC that due to family responsibilities and her being in mourning currently, she believes she would be unable to diligently and with commitment fulfil her duties at this stage," said Magashule.

He said the ANC would in due course redetermine the deployment of a replacement to the position of house chair.

Former president Jacob Zuma appointed Mokonyane into his cabinet in 2014 as minister of water and sanitation. She was one of the two ministers that the president appointed despite them not being MPs.

The constitution makes provision for a president to appoint two non-MPs into his executive.

Ramaphosa moved her to communications in February 2018 and shuffled her again to environmental affairs nine months later.

Mokonyane has been implicated in allegations of state capture by Angelo Agrizzi, former COO of African Global Operations, formerly known as Bosasa. She is alleged to have received R50,000 a month for years from the company as well as money for housing renovations and other lavish gifts.