Minister Faith Muthambi has placed her department’s chief financial officer and deputy director general administration on precautionary suspension. File picture: Phando Jikelo

Cape Town - Public Service and Administration Minister Faith Muthambi has rubbished claims that she unduly appointed 40 people to her office, saying these claims were without substance, and welcomed the probe by the Public Service Commission (PSC).

The PSC has on Thursday agreed to launch a probe into allegations of abuse of power at Public Service minister’s office.

The DA's Desiree van der Walt wrote to the commission earlier this month, asking it to probe the alleged abuse of power at Muthambi’s office.

The DA requested that the commission look into allegations over the 40 new people employed in Muthambi’s office, charging that it was a breach of government policy on the number of staff ministers were allowed.

Muthambi's spokesperson Joe Makhafola told Independent Media that the office of the minister welcomed the investigation.

He said the office also appreciated the approach taken by the DA to request an investigation into “spurious” allegations leveled against Muthambi.

“We are pleased that the Democratic Alliance has decided to explore avenues and platforms available by our democratic architecture. This is a welcome departure from Democratic Alliance usual abuse of, and collusion with mainstream media that we have come to expect,” said Makhafola.

He said the ministry has consistently argued that there was nothing of substance in the allegations.

“The Ministry will provide the Public Service Commission with all the support and documents as they may require in their investigation to put this matter to finality,” added Makhafola.

Cluster Commissioner for DPA Bruno Luthuli has been assigned to conduct an investigation into the claims.

Nehawu spokesperson Khaya Xaba said the union welcomed the investigation and wanted those implicated to be punished.

“We have been raising this issue for some time that our politicians cannot use government resources or their authority to help their families or friends. Those offices are meant to be centres of service delivery and not family enterprise where family members who are unemployed are employed,” added Xaba.

EFF’s Mbuyiseni Ndlozi also said the EFF welcomed the decision by the commission. He said Muthambi must pay back “money that was unduly used” if found guilty.

Political Bureau