Cape Town – President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement that ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule will be presenting himself to the party’s ’’toothless’’ Integrity Commission on December 12 has been met with derision by DA leader John Steenhuisen.
Commenting on the decision after a lengthy ANC national executive committee meeting, Steenhuisen said in a statement on Tuesday ’’this was simply not good enough’’, labelling Magashule ’’one of the ANC’s most corrupt cadres’’, with the Integrity Commission set to preside over nothing more than an ’’elaborately staged pantomime’’.
He said this is a ’’spineless move which proves that the President is too weak to take decisive action against his party’s most corrupt, opting once again to choose the ANC over South Africa, kowtowing to both his comrades and the voters’’.
Magashule was granted bail of R200 000 by the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court last month after appearing on charges of corruption, fraud and money laundering related to an R255 million Free State asbestos audit project tender.
Three months ago, Ramaphosa had promised, in light of wide-scale ANC corruption relating to the procurement of Covid-19 personal protective equipment, that all ‘’cadres of the movement who are formally charged with corruption or other serious crimes must immediately step aside from all leadership positions in the ANC, legislatures and other government structures pending the finalisation of their cases”.
Steenhuisen highlighted that Magashule has not stepped aside, nor has he been suspended.
’’President Ramaphosa’s promises on eradicating corruption are thus empty, and the line he has drawn in the sand has completely washed away. This is a slap in the face to South Africans deserving of justice for the ANC’s theft of their money and livelihoods.
’’We know that the ANC’s Integrity Commission is completely and utterly toothless, and merely functions as a veil for justice for those the President and the ANC are too scared to have charged and jailed in a court of law for their crimes against the country.
’’In early October, former disgraced Mayor of Ethekwini, Zandile Gumede, who was removed from her position last year in the face of a litany of tender corruption charges to the value of R400 million, appeared before the Integrity Commission with her lawyer in tow. There has been no word of any action against her for her crimes since.
’’It would appear that the ANC treats the Integrity Commission as a de facto court where the judges are sympathetic ANC comrades presiding over cases which should be heard in an independent and impartial South African court of law requiring a string of criminal charges. This is not justice, it is merely the ANC’s portrayal of justice at the expense of our country.
’’The DA will not accept the ANC’s elaborately staged pantomime in which comrades are placed on a stage and given a slap on the wrist for South Africans to watch and applaud.’’I will only be applauding when the President has the guts to throw his comrades into a jail cell for the treasonous acts committed against our country. South Africa deserves nothing less.’’