DA to explore avenues to oppose Bathabile Dlamini’s ‘ridiculous’ appointment

Bathabile Dlamini. Image credit: Flickr/GovernmentZA

The Democratic Alliance (DA) says it will “explore all our available avenues to oppose” Bathabile Dlamini’s appointment as chairperson of the Social Housing Regulatory Authority’s (SHRA) interim board.

In a statement issued by DA’s shadow deputy minister of human settlements Emma Louise Powell on Friday, the party said Dlamini’s appointment was “illogical and frankly ridiculous.”

She wrote, “It is completely illogical that anyone would see Dlamini fit to hold any sort of public office when her record is riddled with ineptitude, scandal, alleged corruption and callousness related to the interests of the poor and vulnerable.”

‘Ramaphosa administration not serious’

Powell said President Cyril Ramaphosa’s administration is not serious about the interests of South Africans and that the “New Dawn is indeed an era of awarding bad behaviour and incompetence.”

She added, “The Constitutional Court in the past indicated that Dlamini’s conduct during the social grants debacle in 2017 was reckless and grossly negligent.

“Furthermore, an inquiry into her conduct revealed that Dlamini had misled the Court to protect herself from the consequences of her behaviour.”

Powell cited a 2017 Constitutional Court ruling that “requested the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) consider prosecuting Dlamini for lying under oath.”

In November 2018, NPA said the matter was still under consideration. There have been no further updates since then.

‘Institutional memory’

Makhosini Mgitywa, the spokesperson for Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Minister Lindiwe Sisulu, confirmed Dlamini’s appointment on 702 on Friday, saying she had “institutional memory” on housing matters.

Mgitywa said, “She remains a member of the National Executive Committee of the ANC, she is the president of the Women’s League of the ANC and we have to accept the fact that there is a deployment committee of the ANC.”

He denied claims that Dlamini will have control over the Authority’s R1b budget, saying she will only have influence at policy level.

Dlamini’s tenure as Social Development Minister was marred by controversy over SA Social Security Agency’s (SASSA) contract with Cash Paymaster Services, which the Constitutional Court declared “illegal and invalid.”

Dlamini has steadfastly denied any wrongdoing despite the Court ordering her to personally pay 20% of the legal costs of the Black Sash Trust and Freedom Under Law on the matter.

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