Professor Cathleen Powell, associate professor in public law at the University of Cape Town has described parliament as an institution with powers that it will not use to hold its own executive to account for their wrongdoings.
Powell says while Parliament has both the duty and the power it needs to ask, force, and get the answers to any questions from anyone including President Cyril Ramaphosa on the Phala Phala Farmgate scandal, it will not do so because it is dominated by the governing African National Congress (ANC) party.
The president has defended himself from any wrongdoing regarding his stolen millions from his Phala Phala farm in Limpopo.
Ramaphosa has refused to provide any key details of the now infamous 2020 farm robbery where at least $4 million was apparently stolen, saying he would like to leave the whole matter to the “due processes” that must unfold.
The president has called for patience pending a full investigation into the burglary at the farm.
Speaking to 702 on Wednesday, Powell said the problem with the oversight structure of Parliament is that it’s dominated by the ANC.
“The ANC contingent of the junior members of the ANC and the senior members of the ANC are the executive. So what you’re asking Parliament to do is hold their bosses to account in effect. Not their bosses, but the people who got the power to get them elected come the next election.”
“When parties produce a party list for the election, it’s the leadership of the party that’s going to decide ultimately who gets to go on to the list for who gets elected next time. So, parliament has all the power it needs. It’s not necessary to ask the FBI, it’s just that Parliament doesn’t want to do it because it jibs at holding own executive to account,” said Powell.
Powell said Parliament should be doing more than it is currently doing to hold those who are implicated in unethical behaviour to account.
Former spy boss Arthur Fraser laid a complaint against Ramaphosa, accusing him of breaching the Prevention of Organised Crime Act by not reporting the robbery.
He claimed the suspects who broke into the president’s property were subsequently kidnapped, interrogated, and paid off to keep silent.
According to the statement by Fraser, the millions of “undeclared” US dollars were stashed away inside pieces of furniture at the game farm.
In other news – Unathi Nkayi’s post leaves social media fuming
South African media personality, Unathi Nkayi was forced to delete an insensitive post where she was rubbing shoulders with the Queen Mother of Eswatini. Her trip to Swaziland saw her gaining the opportunity to meet and pose next to her. But she had to remove the post after seeing how hurt the majority of her followers were.
In the post, Unathi was seen kneeling down next to the Queen mother and even accompanied the picture with a short caption. Learn More