Lobby group AfriForum has written to Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane, asking her to investigate the ANC’s use of a military jet in its trip to Harare, Zimbabwe.
In a letter to Mkhwebane, AfriForum’s Willie Spies said she should investigate whether Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula had consulted with Finance Minister Tito Mboweni before undertaking the journey; whether this delegation was authorised and accredited by the Department of International Relations and Cooperative Governance; and what was a suitable sanction or corrective action if and when deemed necessary.
This comes after News24 reported that the ANC had been accused of abusing state resources because it used a government-sponsored jet to conduct party business.
The ANC was seen arriving in Harare on a South African Air Force jet for a planned meeting with Zanu-PF.
At the meeting, it was agreed that there was no “crisis” plaguing Zimbabwe, but that the country faced “challenges”.On Thursday, ministry spokesperson Siphiwe Dlamini said the ANC meeting had coincided with the official work of Minister Mapisa-Nqakula.”The meeting of the ANC in Zimbabwe coincided with the meeting of the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, who was travelling to Zimbabwe to meet her counterpart in preparation for a SADC Troika meeting and the UN reconfiguration of the Force Intervention, which comprises troops from the SADC region,” he said.
AfriForum also launched its own investigation on Thursday over what it said was alleged misappropriation of Air Force assets by high-level members of the ANC.
Spies said the lobby group’s legal representatives had also written to International Relations and Cooperative Government Minister Naledi Pandor, as well as to Mapisa-Ngakula, requesting them to explain whether the Air Force plane had been used lawfully.
“First, the use thereof must be in the public’s interest. Second, the Minister of Defence must approve the use of the assets in consultation with the Minister of Finance,” AfriForum’s Monique Taute said.
AfriForum said it wanted to ascertain whether the correct channels were followed and whether the use of state assets had been authorised.
She added that the country could not allow members of the ruling “elite” to misappropriate state assets as if it was their own property. “We will take the matter further if it seems that politicians violated legislation,” Taute said.