Mapisa-Nqakula has a right to file for an interdict: Analyst

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Legal analyst Advocate Malose Monene says the National Assembly Speaker, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, has a right to file an interdict to restrain possible arrest because, for now, she’s innocent until proven guilty.

The speaker, who is on special leave, has filed court papers to interdict law enforcement authorities from arresting her on corruption allegations.

She’s accused of soliciting a bribe from a defence contractor amounting to millions of rands during her tenure as Defence Minister.

Monene clarifies what it all means, “The application to interdict the arrest is simply saying, Okay, I can face my charges, but my attendance in court can be secured by other methods which are available under the Criminal Procedure Act. “Arrest should be the last resort in terms of securing an accused person’s attendance in court. Is it necessary in these circumstances, or is it for the optics of the media and everybody else to see we’ve arrested the Speaker? It gives the perception that some people are more equal than others. What this means, unfortunately, is that ordinary Malisela in the streets is going to be able to bring this kind of application. He will just be arrested because he’ll not have the money to prosecute it.”

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The GOOD party says it is in the interest of the country that Mapisa-Nqakula, resigns. She has opted to place herself on special leave amid allegations of corruption against her.

However, there are concerns that she may not have the power to take such action.

GOOD MP, Brett Herron, “Given what has happened, it is in the best interest of SA for speaker to resign. This special leave is nonsense, it doesn’t exist. And it’s really in hands, legally, of ANC and Speakers sense of integrity. I think it requires of her to resign, rather than have motion of no confidence to remove her.”

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Meanwhile, IFP’s chief whip in the National Assembly Narend Singh has welcomed the decision by Mapisa-Nqakula to take special leave amid the corruption investigation.

Singh says she did the honourable thing to step aside while the investigation is under way.

“Well, we’re expecting the Speaker to really, you know, give her side of the story. I mean we’ve always believed in the audi alteram partem rule and both sides have to be heard and we are not the judges on this matter. And if the matter goes to court, let’s see how the court pronounces on this matter. But, I do not think we should condemn a person because of allegations because many people in South Africa get accused of many wrongdoings. But let’s see how it unfolds in the future.”

However, ANC Secretary-General, Fikile Mbalula announced that the step-aside rule will apply to Mapisa-Nqakula, if she is on the wrong side of the law.

Mbalula has reacted to developments around Mapisa-Nqakula’s decision to take a special leave following a raid of her home on Tuesday.