DA: Parly must help appoint SIU head

2013-05-22 19:09
Parliament (Dan Calderwood, News24)

Parliament (Dan Calderwood, News24)

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Cape Town - The DA is to submit a private member's bill to Parliament to limit President Jacob Zuma's powers to appoint a new Special Investigating Unit (SIU) head.

The Democratic Alliance said on Wednesday the SIU had been politicised since Nomvula Mokhatla was appointed acting head.

The SIU had been without a permanent head for the past 17 months.

"South Africa cannot be expected to wait any longer for these key appointments to be made. The reality is that by leaving these appointments to the president in the first place, the process has been left open to political abuse," said DA MP Debbie Schafer.

The bill would seek to amend the Special Investigating Unit and Special Tribunals Act to ensure:

- An SIU head can only be appointed by the president on the National Assembly's recommendation;

- A person can only act in the position of SIU head for a maximum of six months;

- The president may remove an SIU head if there are sound reasons for doing so, and with the approval of the National Assembly; and

- The SIU is to table six-monthly progress reports to Parliament for each investigation it is assigned.

"The DA will also continue to push strongly for an amendment to section 179 of the Constitution, to provide that the president likewise must appoint the NDPP on the recommendation of the National Assembly," said Schafer.

In a written reply published on Wednesday, Zuma said there was no deadline to appoint SIU and National Prosecuting Authority heads.

"The president is in the process of appointing the heads of both structures and these appointments will be announced once they have been finalised," Zuma said.

Read more on:    da  |  siu  |  debbie schafer  |  jacob zuma  |  nomvula mokhatla  |  legislation  |  politics

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