DA joins Mabuza ‘car splurge’ complaint

2014-03-14 15:21

A second political party will lodge a complaint with Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s office about Premier David Mabuza spending R5 million to purchase four vehicles last year.

The Mpumalanga Democratic Alliance (DA) asked Madonsela’s office to intervene after the ANC-led Mpumalanga legislature declined to launch a probe against Mabuza for violating guidelines of the ministerial handbook.

DA provincial spokesperson Willie Venter said provincial party leader Anthony Benadie would also ask the Auditor-General’s office to investigate Mabuza’s alleged splurge.

“The letters [to Madonsela and the Auditor-General] will be sent next week. They’ve been drafted and are ready,” Venter said.

Two months ago, the Economic Freedom Fighters lodged a complaint with Madonsela’s office about the premier’s vehicles.

Benadie wants the legislature to hold Mabuza accountable by establishing a multi-party ad hoc committee to investigate the matter or summon Mabuza to appear before the legislature’s disciplinary committee, but the motion was dismissed by the ANC majority last week.

Mabuza has not denied purchasing the vehicles. His spokesperson, Zibonele Mncwango, said he replaced one car because it had a high mileage, traded in another because it had mechanical problems and bought another one as a back-up.

Mabuza has bought a Lexus LS 460, two Range Rover SUVs, an Audi A8, and a BMW X5 for his bodyguards since taking office in 2009.

He bought the Lexus to replace a similar model which had mechanical problems.

The other four cars were bought last year and exceed the stipulations of the ministerial handbook.

The handbook allows a premier to buy a car that does not exceed 70% of his annual salary package.

Premiers are allowed to replace their vehicles after reaching a mileage of 120 000 kilometres or after having used it for five years.

A premier earns about R1.9 million per year and is therefore allowed to buy a vehicle worth R1.3 million.

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