HomePoliticsGeneral NewsParliament Says It Can’t Probe Complaint Against Mapisa-Nqakula On Secretary’s Salary Hike

Parliament Says It Can’t Probe Complaint Against Mapisa-Nqakula On Secretary’s Salary Hike

In light of the Powers and Privileges Committee's decision, it is clear that further action is required to address the concerns raised by the DA.

The Powers and Privileges Committee recently announced that it received a legal opinion from the Parliamentary Legal Services stating that it cannot investigate former National Assembly Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula.

This decision comes after the Democratic Alliance (DA) lodged a complaint with Acting National Assembly Speaker Lechesa Tsenoli regarding the alleged salary hike of Parliament’s Secretary, Xolile George.

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Last year, reports emerged that Xolile George’s annual salary was increased to R4.4 million, exceeding the maximum salary of R2.6 million for the position of Secretary to Parliament.

In response, the DA requested an investigation into Mapisa-Nqakula’s alleged involvement in the salary hike. However, despite her resignation as National Assembly Speaker and a Member of Parliament (MP), the DA believes that the investigation should continue.

The DA argues that Parliament is still unaware of how the 70% salary hike was approved by the two executive authorities.

They maintain that Mapisa-Nqakula remains a person of interest in this investigation, and her resignation as an MP does not change that. If she is found to have contravened the Powers, Privileges, and Immunities of Parliament and Provincial Legislatures Act, she may face criminal charges, even as an ordinary member of the public.

The DA also emphasizes the need to investigate the Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) and his role in the salary scandal. They believe that corrective measures must be implemented to address this issue.

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The Powers and Privileges Committee, however, maintains that it has received a legal opinion stating that its mandate, as outlined in the Powers, Privileges, and Immunities of Parliament and Provincial Legislatures Act, only extends to current Members of Parliament.

Therefore, once a person ceases to be an MP, the committee has no jurisdiction to consider a matter related to that individual.

As Mapisa-Nqakula resigned as an MP, the committee argues that it cannot investigate the complaint lodged by the DA’s Chief Whip. Despite this decision, the DA is determined to pursue the investigation further.

They are currently exploring options within the Powers, Privileges, and Immunities of Parliament and Provincial Legislatures Act, the Financial Management of Parliament and Provincial Legislatures Act, and the Assembly rules.

The DA asserts that Mapisa-Nqakula’s resignation does not absolve her, nor does it address the alleged irregular salary hike of Xolile George. They emphasize that George is still serving as Secretary to Parliament and that the executive authority must be held accountable for his salary increase.

In light of the Powers and Privileges Committee’s decision, it is clear that further action is required to address the concerns raised by the DA.

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The investigation into the alleged salary hike and the involvement of key individuals, including Mapisa-Nqakula and George, must proceed to ensure accountability and transparency.

The DA is committed to exploring all available avenues within the relevant legislation and rules to move the investigation forward. They believe that the resignation of Mapisa-Nqakula should not halt the process of holding her accountable, as well as addressing the underlying issues surrounding the salary scandal.

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Ntuthuko Gumede for SurgeZirc SA
Ntuthuko Gumede for SurgeZirc SA
In the fast-paced world of politics, staying informed is crucial. Ntuthuko Gumede, a renowned journalist, has been making waves with his insightful and thought-provoking political news articles on SurgeZirc SA. With his expertise and dedication to reporting accurate and unbiased information, Gumede has become a trusted source for political analysis.
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