National Assembly speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula has declined a request from John Steenhuisen to set up an ad hoc committee to investigate allegations of theft at President Cyril Ramaphosa's Phala Phala game farm.
Parliamentary spokesperson Moloto Mothapo said the DA leader wrote to the speaker requesting she establish the committee in terms of a National Assembly rule allowing for this.
Mapisa-Nqakula declined the request, arguing that the rule sets out requirements for the establishment of an ad hoc committee and one of them is the performance of a specific task, Mothapo said.
“While the request proposes a committee on Phala Phala, it goes on to list various distinct tasks for investigation. In the nature of the proposed investigation, this is understandable.
“However, some of the tasks proposed are arguably still within the purview of other entities or institutions, including law enforcement, and may indeed necessitate parliament’s attention in due course. At this stage, the various components raised by Mr Steenhuisen for parliamentary intervention are better suited for attention by the existing parliamentary oversight structures,” said Mothapo.
Mapisa-Nqakula also declined an ATM motion submitted in accordance with a National Assembly rule to seek the president's removal in terms of the constitution.
“In her letter to Vuyo Zungula of the ATM, the speaker explained that from reading his submission, she was unable to determine which of the listed [constitutional] grounds he was relying on.
“The speaker has accordingly advised Mr Zungula to ensure clearly formulated grounds on which his motion relies. The services of the office of secretary to the NA have in this regard been made available to assist with the technical formulation of the motion, should such assistance be required,” Mothapo said.