Johannesburg – The official opposition has blasted President Cyril Ramaphosa over his sanction against Defence and Military Veterans Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula over the ferrying of an ANC delegation to Zimbabwe on an aircraft of the South African Air Force (SAAF).
This comes as Ramaphosa has been under pressure from opposition parties to fire Mapisa-Nqakula over the saga, with the ANC being accused of having abused state resources through the trip.
Ramaphosa has over the weekend reprimanded Mapisa-Nqakula and imposed a three-month salary sacrifice on her.
DA spokesperson on defence Kobus Marais said his party viewed the sanction as a slap on the wrist, adding that the party wanted her to be fired by the end of this coming week.
“The President’s decision to merely reprimand the Minister for willfully overseeing the ANC’s abuse of an air force jet is simply not good enough. This reprimand does not illustrate how serious President Ramaphosa is about the Minister’s dereliction of duty, it illustrates how weak he is in holding members of his party and his Executive to account,” Marais said.
The party accused Ramaphosa of not making Mapisa-Nqakula pay for her action, even though it was clear that she had committed an offence.
“We simply cannot allow that the Minister gets off scot free. The fact is that she willfully allowed the ANC to abuse public funds to illegally travel to Zimbabwe and back aboard the air force’s Falcon-900 aircraft,” Marais said.
The party said it viewed Mapisa-Nqakula’s actions as a gross violation of her oath of office.