Open memo to the Speaker and Whip’s Forum re: Public Protector report on IEC lease agreement scandal to be considered Parliamentary Ad-hoc Committee from Bantu Holomisa, MP (UDM President) on 11 September 2013

The United Democratic Movement (UDM) demands a review of a decision to establish an Ad-hoc Committee to consider the report of the Public Protector, Advocate Thuli Madonsela, on the investigation into allegations of maladministration and corruption in the procurement of premises to accommodate the head office of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC).

The proposal of the Majority Whip limits the participation of other political parties, yet we are all stakeholders of the IEC. There is no logic in the way in which the Ad-hoc Committee was constituted – instead the Portfolio Committee for Home Affairs should consider this matter.

According to this draft, the ANC has 7 representatives, the DA 2, Cope 1, IFP 1 and remaining 8 parties is to be represented by 1 person. This smacks of manipulation to ensure a premeditated outcome. The principle of proportional representation has been completely violated, for instance how is it possible that the IFP and Cope to be allocated 1 representative each, yet Cope has more seats than the IFP in Parliament. The same applies to the parties who have 4 seats each in Parliament (UDM, ID, ACDP and FF+) and the rest with 1 seat each (namely the APC, MF, PAC and Azapo,) – they are told that they must have 1 person to represent all these stakeholders. It should be noted that each of these parties do not necessarily argue from the same point of view and their colleague in another party cannot hope to represent them fairly and accurately.

In terms of the Electoral Act, the Electoral Court would have to, in one way or another, to play a role in this matter. We are therefore wondering whether it is not premature for the so-called Ad-Hoc Committee to even start deliberating the matter, instead of Parliament referring it to the Electoral Court. Parliament can then discuss the Court’s decision.

Mr Bantu Holomisa, MP
UDM President