In a unanimous decision, the National Assembly has approved the report to remove Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) chairperson Rubben Mohlaloga from his position.
Mohlaloga was sentenced to 20 years in prison on February 14 for fraud and money laundering in the Pretoria Specialised Commercial Crime Court. Mohlaloga, who was appointed chairperson of Icasa in December 2017, was found guilty of the two charges in January 2018.
After Portfolio Committee on Communications chair Hlengiwe Mkhize read out the report to members of Parliament, DA MP Marian Shinn took to the podium.
Shinn stated that since Mohlaloga had been "convicted of fraud and money laundering and in terms of the Icasa Act, he no longer qualifies to serve on the Icasa council". She added, "he used the money intended for poor black farmers to buy himself two BMWs".
EFF MP Nazier Paulsen stated that "the EFF welcomes and applauds the decision taken by the Portfolio Committee on Communications that Mr Ruben Mohlaloga be removed with immediate effect regardless of whether he appeals his sentence by the Pretoria Specialised Crime Court".
Paulsen added that "one can only imagine how easy it would have been for one or more of the large network companies to slip Mr Mohlaloga a few million to stop the bringing down of data costs".
Liezel van der Merwe of the IFP indicated her party's support for the report as well as her belief that Mohlaloga should never have been hired in the first place.
NFP MP Nhlanhlakayise Moses Khubisa said in reference to the emerging black farmer's whose money had been fraudulently misappropriated by Mohlaloga that "whatever that the state was trying to do, this man was undermining all that".
ANC MP Rembuluwani Moses Tseli also indicated his support of the removal of Mohlaloga from his position.