The DA welcomes that Public Protector, Adv Busisiwe Mkhwebane, has decided to investigate the relationship between the Minister of Social Development, Bathabile Dlamini, and Cash Paymaster Services (CPS), following the DA’s request for her to probe their relationship.
The DA is of the belief that Dlamini purposefully bungled the takeover process to ensure CPS would continue to distribute social grants. It is astounding that a Minister who has put the livelihoods of 17 million South Africans at risk, possibly for her own personal gain, would be allowed to keep their job. Yet, we have come to see that President Zuma rewards failure.
The entire country, including the Constitutional Court, has seen Dlamini for what she truly is, uncaring and “incompetent”. The DA has repeatedly called for her to be fired but Zuma continues to protect her.
In fact, instead of firing her, he has opted to establish an Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on social security. Like Nkandla, this committee is nothing more than an exercise in institutionalised white-washing.
Dlamini has refused to adhere to three separate legal opinions presented to her and has even disregarded the Constitutional Court. Media reports also indicate that Zuma’s special adviser, Michael Hulley, held special meetings with Dlamini and SASSA officials to ensure the extension of the illegal contract between SASSA and CPS.
Dlamini seemed desperate to ensure that CPS continues to pay out social grants to the 17 million poor and vulnerable beneficiaries and the reasons for this must be fully investigated.
Even when CPS was exposed for illegally deducting money from the social grants of the most vulnerable in our society, she did not care.
The DA therefore hopes that the Public Protectors’ investigation will shed some light on how this crisis came about and that those who are responsible, particularly Dlamini, are brought to account, as it is becoming clear that the president will continue to aid Dlamini in dodging accountability.
Bridget Masango MP
DA Shadow Minister of Social Development