Bathabile Dlamini did not deliberately mislead Parliament over Sassa grants - Mkhwebane

2019-10-02 17:17
Former social development minister Bathabile Dlamini. (GCIS)

Former social development minister Bathabile Dlamini. (GCIS)

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Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane says former social development minister Bathabile Dlamini did not deliberately mislead Parliament during a budget vote speech in May 2016 when she stated the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) would be ready to take over the management of the grants payment system from Cash Paymaster Service (CPS). 

Mkhwebane was briefing the media at her office in Pretoria on Wednesday.

The complaint against Dlamini was lodged by DA MP Bridget Masango in March 2017. 

In a briefing to the portfolio committee on social development on February 1, 2017, Sassa officials informed the committee the agency would seek an extension from the Constitutional Court of the existing contract with CPS on the basis that the department was unable to take over and manage the distribution of grants in South Africa.

However, Masango was of the view that at the time of Dlamini's speech on the budget vote in May 2016, it was unlikely that the former minister did not appreciate that the agency would not be ready to distribute social grants.

"On analysis of the complaint, we decided to investigate whether the former minister deliberately or inadvertently misled the National Assembly when she delivered her budget vote speech in which she made an undertaking on behalf of Sassa to take over the management and control of the payment process that was performed by Cash Paymaster Service from April 2017, and in doing so violated the executive code of ethics," Mkhwebane said.

She added her office had found that the allegations against Dlamini were "unsubstantiated".

"Based on the information and evidence obtained during the investigation, I could not make a finding on the allegation that the former minister of social development Bathabile Dlamini deliberately or inadvertently misled the National Assembly and contravened the executive ethics code when she delivered her budget vote speech on May 4, 2016."

Read more on:    public protector  |  busisiwe mkhwebane  |  bathabile dlamini
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