Minister of Women in the Presidency, Bathabile Dlamini. Picture: Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters

Johannesburg - President Cyril Ramaphosa must fire Minister of Women in the Presidency, Bathabile Dlamini, with immediate effect, the Democratic Alliance (DA) said on Thursday. 

The Constitutional Court ordered Dlamini, the former social development minister, to pay 20 percent of costs related to the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) grant payment debacle. 

DA MP Bridget Masango said the ruling shows that Dlamini cannot be trusted with championing the rights of the most vulnerable in society. 

“The appointment of Dlamini as Minister of Women in the Presidency should not have happened in the first place given that she manufactured the social grants crisis, so she could benefit through the planned extension of the illegal CPS contract,” said Masango. 

Masango said Ramaphosa could no longer ignore this fact and should fire her immediately if he had any care for the millions of people she endangered through her actions. 

“The Constitutional Court went so far as to say that Dlamini’s behaviour was 'reckless and grossly negligent' and that a copy of the judgment should be sent to the National Director of Public Prosecutions to determine if Dodging Dlamini can be prosecuted for perjury if indeed she lied to the court,” said Masango.

The MP added that the African National Congress (ANC) government protected and rewarded Dlamini for her role in the grants crisis, instead of holding her accountable. 

She was ultimately responsible for risking the livelihoods of 17 million South Africans who she should have protected, and her recklessness cannot be allowed to continue, said Masango.

In 2014, the same court ruled that the Sassa contract with Cash Paymaster Services, to pay social grant beneficiaries, was illegal giving the department until March 2017 find a new service provider. The department went on to twice request extensions of the invalid contract after failing to contract to a new provider.

African News Agency/ANA