Investigate me, Mapisa-Nqakula says

2016-06-03 14:06
Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula. (Deaan Vivier, City Press)

Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula. (Deaan Vivier, City Press)

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Cape Town – Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula says she will welcome any investigation into her conduct.

It would allow her to present the facts of the matter in an impartial and fair process, she said in a statement on Friday.

"Although I know that this will be a difficult journey for all involved, I nevertheless believe it’ll be in the interest of my responsibility and duty to be accountable to the people of South Africa whom I serve," said Mapisa-Nqakula.

She said in a statement on May 22 that she had helped facilitate Burundian woman Michelle Wege's release from a jail in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and had her flown to South Africa so she could escape a life of abuse.

She was responding to claims that helping Wege amounted to an abuse of state resources.

The Sunday Times this week reported that Wege was romantically involved with Mapisa-Nqakula's late son Chumani.

She expressed concern about the impact that the prolonged media reports, and what she called the insensitive twisting of facts, were having on Wege.

She said she would welcome an investigation by the public protector’s office as well.

DA lays charges

The DA on Friday laid charges against the minister for "committing an offence under section 49(2) of the Defence Act".

DA MP Kobus Marais said the circumstances around the "offence" included breaking other laws.

"While the minister may claim to have good intentions; it simply cannot be condoned that she broke the law, which as minister of defence and a previous MP at the time the law was passed, she could not reasonably have not had full knowledge of," he said.

Marais said Mapisa-Nqakula had broken her oath to uphold the rule of law and the Constitution.

Spirit of ubuntu

The ANC Women’s League on Thursday said it was shocked at the insensitive reports about Wege.

"We cannot turn a blind eye and pretend we are not aware of the high levels of sexual and physical abuse against women in many African countries, which should be a cause for concern" secretary general Meokgo Matuba said in a statement.

She questioned whether newspapers and media were using the incident to increase their circulation.

"What happened to the spirit of ubuntu? Do we have human beings behind the words and the desks of our newsrooms?" she asked.

Read more on:    nosiviwe mapisa-nqakula  |  cape town

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