Mabuza faces tough questions on Mpumalanga political killings

Deputy president David Mabuza faced tough questions in Parliament today. (Delwyn Verasamy/M&G)

Deputy president David Mabuza faced tough questions in Parliament today. (Delwyn Verasamy/M&G)

In its first showdown with deputy president David Mabuza in the National Assembly, the Democratic Alliance (DA) brought up the issue of political killings in Mabuza’s home province of Mpumalanga.

In the follow-up on his original question about Mabuza’s role in leading the moral regeneration movement on Tuesday, DA chief whip John Steenhuisen asked what the moral regeneration movement was planning on doing about “the morally repugnant” political killings.

Mabuza stared at Steenhuisen as he mentioned the names of politicians who were killed in Mpumalanga, where Mabuza was premier until he was appointed deputy president, including James Nkambule and Jimmy Mohlala.

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Mohlala, who was the speaker of the Mbombela municipality, was killed in 2009. He blew the whistle on massive tender corruption surrounding a stadium built for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, while Nkambule was allegedly poisoned for claiming politicians were behind assassinations in the province.

Although Steenhuisen didn’t state explicitly that Mabuza was connected to their deaths, an ANC MP got up to complain that he was casting aspersions on Mabuza.

Mabuza said the task of MPs was to uphold the Constitution.

‘Go to the nearest police station’

“Honourable members must do the right thing,” he said. He said they shouldn’t cast aspersions.

He said law enforcement agencies must do their work without any hindrance.

“All I can do as a citizen is help the police find a criminal,” Mabuza said.

“Just confess!” yelled DA MPs.

He said if MPs had any information on political killings, they must report it.

“If you know, go to the nearest police station and lay charges,” he said.

He said laying a charge means they must provide substantive information.

“It’s easy to cast aspersions, it’s difficult to be substantive,” he said, with a slight smile.

‘Are you rehabilitated?’

Another follow-up question was from Agang’s Andries Tlouamma.

“It is unfortunate that you are not a good example of moral leadership,” Tlouamma said to Mabuza.

“Are you rehabilitated after being part of the premier league?” Tlouamma asked while ANC MP Patrick Chauke got up to raise a point of order.

Deputy Speaker Lechesa Tsenoli agreed that Tlouamma was out of order by casting aspersions on Mabuza.

“You can do better than that!” Tsenoli said to Tlouamma.

“I’m not casting aspersions, it’s true!” answered Tlouamma.

“You’re worse! You’re worse than I thought!” said Tsenoli.

Tlouamma wouldn’t back down.

“He (Mabuza) even failed in Mpumalanga as a premier,” he said.

Mabuza stood still behind the podium, only tapping a finger on his left hand on the podium.

Tsenoli warned Tlouamma that there was “good fresh air” outside the chamber, but he still refused to withdraw his remarks.

Tsenoli ordered him to leave the House and he left amid cries of “Hamba! (Go!)” from the ANC benches.—News24


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