The Democratic Alliance (DA) has welcomed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s decision to give Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula an ultimatum on the ANC-SANDF Zimbabwe trip, but says it will keep a close eye on the developments.
Ramaphosa gave Mapisa-Nqakula 48 hours to explain why she shared an SANDF jet with a senior ANC delegation to Zimbabwe. The Minister went to Zimbabwe to meet with her Defence counterpart while the ANC delegation went to meet with their counterpart, Zanu-PF, following allegations of human rights violations in Zimbabwe.
DA MP and Member of Parliament’s Defence and Military Veterans Committee, Kobus Marais says, “The DA is very happy with the announcement of the President last night, that he has conceded to our demand and our demand to do an investigation to get a report from the Minister of Defence on the apparent abuse and misappropriation of the SA-Airforce VIP Jet to fly her and her ANC colleagues for party political reasons to Zimbabwe. So, we will be having a close eye on that development and we will certainly not just accept just any answer from the Minister. We have experience with her with regards to the Collins Khoza case where we know that her original feedback and report was totally flawed. So, we will have checks and balances and make sure that she properly accounts to the President and to the people of South Africa.”
COPE believes President Ramaphosa knew about the travel arrangements
Meanwhile, the Congress of the People (COPE) says it does not believe that President Ramaphosa was unaware that the ANC-delegation was on the SANDF flight to Zimbabwe.
COPE Spokesperson Dennis Bloem, “President Cyril Ramaphosa must stop undermining the intelligence of the people of this country to request a report within 48 hours from the Minister of Defence Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula on the so-called lift to her ANC colleagues on an SANDF Jet to Zimbabwe, it’s just a cover-up. There is no way that President of the ANC, Cyril Ramaphosa was not aware of the travel arrangements of his colleagues to Zimbabwe. We are saying that President Cyril Ramaphosa and the ANC is going to destroy the country with their arrogance. Nobody is above the law. We are going to call for a special debate in Parliament. All political parties must express themselves on this matter of national importance.”
EFF calls for Mapisa-Nqakula’s suspension
On Friday, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) called for Mapisa-Nqakula to be suspended with immediate effect over the use of a South African National Defence Force (SANDF) jet to fly an African National Congress (ANC) led delegation to Zimbabwe.
The ANC has sought to explain the use of the jet – saying there is a need for regional stability.
The delegation met with officials from the ruling Zanu-PF this week – following allegations of human rights violations amid the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown.
The FF Plus condemns the incident as an abuse of state resources and says the ANC does not grasp the notion of the separation of powers between the party and the state.
The FF Plus has further called on the ANC to compensate the state for what it says was an illegal use of resources.