Parliament’s Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) has decided not to summon President Cyril Ramaphosa to appear to provide information on the leaked audio recording.
Parliament’s legal services and various committee members have agreed that a summons should be the last resort.
This comes after African National Congress (ANC) member of parliament Mervyn Dirks requested Scopa to summon Ramaphosa to appear before the committee.
Dirks wants the President to share information about his knowledge of the alleged misuse of public funds for political party activities.
A Parliamentary committee has the powers to summon any person to appear before it when required to do so.
Section 56 of the Constitution makes provision for the National Assembly or any of its Parliament committees to summon anyone to provide information.
The constitution requires the summons to be carried out in terms of national legislation, rules or orders. In the current instance, a summons issued in terms of the National Assembly Rules and the Section 14 of the Powers, Privileges and Immunities of Parliament and Provincial Legislatures Act.
In terms of the Act, the summons must be delivered by a sheriff of the court or any person designated by the Secretary.
Section 17 of the Act makes further provision for a fine or imprisonment not exceeding 12 months or both if a person fails to comply with the summons.
SCOPA on President Cyril Ramaphosa