Official opposition says Ramaphosa must make public the report that potentially details ’flagrant abuse of state resources’
CAPE TOWN – The DA said on Monday it would submit an application in terms of the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA) to compel President Cyril Ramaphosa to make public the report into the use of an airforce plane to carry an ANC delegation to ZImbabwe.
“This report is already gathering dust on President Ramaphosa’s desk. It must be made public,” DA MP Kobus Marais said.
Marais said that, should the report not be released, the matter would become a case of the ruling party investigating, and potentially legitimising, its abuse of state resources without scrutiny.
“We cannot allow a situation where a report, potentially detailing a flagrant abuse of scarce state resources is viewed and decided upon by President Ramaphosa alone, whose track record in holding his ANC comrades accountable for corruption is depressing,” he said.
“The ANC cannot legitimately investigate itself, the president must hand over this report so that checks and balances that are available in our democratic system can properly scrutinise it and hold those found guilty accountable.”
The DA’s decision comes after Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakulo on Friday briefed the ANC’s parliamentary study group on defence on the trip in a closed meeting.
At the meeting, the minister confirmed that the trip, undertaken a fortnight ago, is being probed by the Public Protector.
She has explained that a ruling party delegation was given space on an airforce jet that was carrying a ministerial party to Zimbabwe, and hence costs had not been incurred especially to ferry the party members to South Africa’s troubled neighbour.
The ANC group included party secretary general Ace Magashule and National Executive Committee members Tony Yengeni and Nomvula Mokonyane.
Their use of a military jet sparked outrage and Ramaphosa ordered the defence minister to provide him with a report as to what had happened within 48 hours.