Mazzone urges Ramaphosa to fire 'corrupt' nominees for parliamentary committees

DA MP claims South Africans dealt a 'slap in the face' by ANC's proposed chairs

25 June 2019 - 18:47 By ANDISIWE MAKINANA
Natasha Mazzone pleaded with President Ramaphosa on Tuesday to dismiss former 'Zuma ministers' implicated in state capture.
Natasha Mazzone pleaded with President Ramaphosa on Tuesday to dismiss former 'Zuma ministers' implicated in state capture.
Image: Alon Skuy

DA MP Natasha Mazzone has called on President Cyril Ramaphosa to dismiss ANC MPs who have been designated to chair the National Assembly's portfolio committees.

"Through you, chairperson, I ask that the president, as the leader of the ANC, steel your resolve and dismiss these people from parliament. Prove that you are indeed the master of our fate, the captain of this ship, and that you are not just being led around by the nose by factions in your party," said Mazzone, while debating Ramaphosa's state of the nation address (Sona).

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Without mentioning any names, Mazzone bemoaned the fact that former ministers Bongani Bongo, Mosebenzi Zwane, Faith Muthambi and Tina Joematt-Pettersson - some of whom have been accused of wrongdoing at the state capture inquiry - have been designated by the ANC to chair the oversight committees.

Portfolio committees will elect new chairpersons on July 2.

"I took it as personal left hook to the jaw when I read with utter disbelief that the very man who was accused of offering a blank cheque to advocate Ntuthuzelo Vanara, the evidence leader in the public enterprises inquiry into state capture at Eskom, will be rewarded with a chairperson’s seat," said Mazzone.

"An ex-minister who has been repeatedly accused of interfering with the SA mining industry for the enrichment of the Gupta family will be rewarded with a chairperson’s seat.

"The woman who destroyed what was left of the SABC will be rewarded with a chairperson’s seat.

"The woman who without explanation sold off the entire South African strategic fuel reserve will be rewarded with a chairperson’s seat," said Mazzone in reference to Joemat-Petterson, under whose watch as energy minister the Central Energy Fund’s strategic oil stocks were sold off for less than the going market rate and without permission from the National Treasury.

Mazzone said she was speaking to Ramaphosa not as a politician or a member of an opposing political party, but as a patriotic fellow South African. "South African to South African, this is the straw that breaks the camel’s back. This is the one step too far," she told Ramaphosa.

"This is proof that the Zuma faction is still well and truly in charge of the ANC - and that it matters not if the driver has changed; the bus is still the same. We have all been taken for fools.

"I am outraged and frustrated - more than any words could explain - at the blatant slap in the face that all South Africans were recently dealt when the ANC announced its proposed chairpersons of our parliamentary committees."

Mazzone said this was not the time to accept the excuse that those implicated at the state capture inquiry are innocent until proven guilty, but rather the time to ensure that oversight roles are strengthened - as per a direct instruction from deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo.

Members of parliament debated President Cyril Ramaphosa's recent state of the nation address (Sona) on Tuesday June 25 2019. Members of the major opposition parties were quick to criticise the president. Here are three of the punchiest moments from the debate.


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