Bathabile Dlamini Picture: Ntswe Mokoena/DOC/GCIS
Johannesburg - The DA has also given President Cyril Ramaphosa until Friday to remove Minister for Women in the Presidency Bathabile Dlamini or face legal action.

On Wednesday, the official opposition party vowed to step up pressure on Dlamini, pictured, until she was removed from Cabinet over her role in the social grants crisis while social development minister.

The DA on Wednesday also opened a criminal case for perjury at the Johannesburg Central police station against Dlamini, relating to the Constitutional Court ruling last week that she had misled the apex court.

In 2014, the Constitutional Court ruled that the contract entered into by social grants agency Sassa and distributor Cash Paymaster Services was unlawful. Justice Johan Froneman said Dlamini, who has also been ordered to pay 20% of the legal costs, had misled the court in a bid to protect herself over her role in the crisis that threatened the payment of grants.

DA spokesperson on social development Bridget Masango, who opened the case, said the criminal case against Dlamini was one of the many attempts by the party to ensure that she was held accountable, even before the recent ruling.

“We have tried many avenues such as the parliamentary oversight mechanisms to hold the minister to account.

“(We were) not been successful (after) writing to the former president (Jacob Zuma) last year to say please release the minister because of the reasons that we had and even at that time the Constitutional Court had pronounced on how the minister had been just reckless and incompetent,” Masango said.

The court directed the National Prosecuting Authority to determine whether Dlamini should not be prosecuted for perjury for misleading it.

However, Masango said the party did not trust the NPA as it had a history of dragging its feet on political cases.

“given the history of the NPA, we are not sure if they will prosecute her. It is not confirmed that the NPA is going investigate,” she said.

Masango, however, praised Ramaphosa’s “new dawn”, hailing him for his commitment to restore good governance.

“We believe the president is a very reasonable man. He is the man that wants to clean government. He is the man that is coming up with the new dawn.

“We are just saying he must release the minister because she is not fit to hold office. We believe that the minister is not fit to be a minister of anything, which is why we are asking the president (to) release her.”

Dlamini’s spokesperson Mandla Tshabalala could not be reached by the time of going to print.

Political Bureau