On 3 October, the Democratic Alliance (DA) laid charges of perjury against Minister Bathabile Dlamini at the Johannesburg Central Police Station.
The charges follow the damning judgment by the Constitutional Court which found that the minister had apparently lied under oath.
The court then requested that the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) consider whether Dlamini should be prosecuted for lying during her testimony at the Judge Bernard Ngoepe Inquiry into the social grants crisis.
While the NPA considers charging her, DA shadow minister for the Department of Social Services, Bridget Masango, said it is vital that all avenues to hold her to account are used to make sure she will not continue to dodge facing the consequences of putting the lives of millions at risk.
Retired Judge Bernard Ngoepe, who led the Inquiry into her role in the 2017 social grants debacle, offered a scathing assessment of Dlamini’s testimony.
Masango said Judge Ngoepe’s findings strongly suggested that some of Dlamini’s evidence under oath in the affidavits before this court and orally before the Inquiry was ‘false’ and that she may have ‘misled’ the Court to protect herself from the consequences of her behaviour.
“Last week, the Constitutional Court branded the minister as reckless and grossly negligent proving that Dlamini clearly has no place in government,” said Masango who addressed the media outside the police station after opening the case.
“It is clear from her actions that she does not care for the millions of vulnerable South Africans who depend on social grants every month just to feed their loved ones.”
Masango said they have also given President Cyril Ramaphosa an ultimatum to remove Dlamini from his cabinet.
She said, “It is clear the President is harbouring individuals in his cabinet who are constitutionally and morally bankrupt and have very little regard for the laws and people of the country. It is for this reason the DA has given him until Friday, 5 October, to remove Dlamini from his Cabinet.”
It is now in the hands of the South African Police Services to investigate these charges against Minister Dlamini and up to the NPA to ensure that she is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
Dodging Dlamini can no longer run away from accountability, said the shadow minister adding that the DA will continue to explore all possible avenues to ensure that she has her day in court.
Captain Xoli Mbele, the spokesperson for the Johannesburg Central Police Station has referred queries to the provincial office.
When contacted, the spokesperson for Gauteng police, Colonel Lungelo Dlamini said he has only heard about the case but could not give details requesting to investigate.
He, however, said, “In most instances, such cases are investigated by the Hawks but I will investigate and comment on the matter when I have the details.”
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