Home South African Parliament preparing process of dealing with Zondo Commission report

Parliament preparing process of dealing with Zondo Commission report

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The research department, currently summarising the commission reports to improve oversight and legal services, provides legal opinion on how to deal with the reports once they are officially submitted.

Chief Justice Raymond Zondo addresses the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture. File picture: Karen Sandison/African News Agency (ANA)

CAPE TOWN – Parliament says it is in the process of establishing appropriate systems to process and oversee the implementation of the Zondo Commission report, spokesperson Moloto Mothapo said.

In a statement, Mothapo said President Cyril Ramaphosa has officially submitted part three of the commission’s report, which related to the conduct of current and former MPs.

“As the aspects of the report have a direct bearing on Parliamentary business, the institution has swiftly initiated processes to implement its recommendations. Accordingly, the joint committee on ethics and members’ interests has been requested to investigate possible contraventions of the code of ethical conduct and disclosure of members’ interest for assembly and Parliament council members,” he said.

“This applies only to current members, who were serving in Parliament when any alleged transgressions took place.”

This comes after the legal opinion said portfolio committees should pro-actively apply themselves to the information in the report, to determine if it warranted further engagement and interrogation of public bodies that fall under its portfolio.

The legal opinion had noted the released parts of the Zondo Commission report, saying it would be necessary for Parliament to determine whether any implicated MPs have breached or failed to comply, in particular, with the ethics code.

It had recommended to National Assembly Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula to refer part three of the report to the ethics committee, to consider the alleged breach of the Ethics Code by NCOP delegate Winnie Ngwenya and House chairperson Cedric Frolick.

Mothapo said that while the official submission of all outstanding reports was awaited, Parliament has already started working on systems based on publicly available copies of the reports.

“Parliament’s research department is currently processing the reports, summarising them into, among other things, action plans to improve Parliament’s execution of its constitutional mandate, consistent with the corrective measures contained in the reports.”

Mothapo also said parliamentary legal services has conducted an analysis of the reports and has generated a legal opinion proposing a process Parliament should follow in dealing with the reports once they have been officially submitted.

“Parliament has an obligation to implement corrective measures from the commission’s reports, with regard to areas where Parliament has a role to play,” said Mothapo.

Mothapo added that Parliament has a responsibility to oversee the executive and state agencies’ actions in the implementation of the commission’s recommendations.

“The Rules Committee will, at an opportune time, consider how best to process the reports and implementation plan in their entirety,” he added.

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