10 October 2017

South Africa: MDDA Will Be Investigated By Parliament

The Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA) will be investigated, the portfolio committee on communications decided at a meeting on Tuesday where it emerged that MDDA chairperson Phelisa Nkomo did act as the agency's CEO, in spite of her statements to the contrary.

After a presentation on the MDDA's annual report, DA MP Veronica van Dyk expressed her concern about the agency and said she had proof that Nkomo had acted as CEO.

Dlodlo said she thought the matter had been settled and that Nkomo "was read the riot act".

"It is true," conceded Dlodlo. "She was acting as CEO."

Making reference to Communications Minister Ayanda Dlodlo's statement that she didn't act on rumours, and waving a bank statement, Van Dyk said she had proof that Nkomo "paid herself almost R80 000".

"So it is not rumours," Van Dyk said.

DA MP Phumzile van Damme said at a meeting between the committee and the MDDA in Stellenbosch in April, Nkomo had denied that she had acted as the MDDA's CEO.

Van Damme said the DA had proof that she signed documents and got a salary as CEO.

"She lied to us," Van Damme said.

Legal advice

Van Damme also referred to an answer to a parliamentary question from the DA about whether Nkomo had acted on behalf of the CEO and/or as the CEO of the MDDA in each of the past five financial years.

Dlodlo's answer said Nkomo "has neither acted on behalf of the CEO; nor acted as the CEO of the MDDA in each of the past five financial years".

Van Damme said: "I don't know if the chair (Nkomo) also misled the minister, or what happened there."

ANC MP Mandisa Matshoba seemed more disturbed by the fact that Van Dyk had an MDDA bank statement in her possession than what it seemed to suggest.

"If we agree for an investigation, we can start there," she said.

Van Damme said the DA had received the document from a whistleblower at the MDDA, whose identity the party would never reveal.

Van Dyk made several other allegations, but committee chairperson Humphrey Maxegwana was concerned that the committee shouldn't start its investigation there and then.

The committee agreed that Maxegwana, ANC whip in the committee Lerumo Kalako and Van Damme would meet and get legal advice on how to proceed with the investigation. They will report back to the rest of the committee on Wednesday or Thursday.

Source: News24

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