Gigaba and Masondo have used the Hawks in two separate incidents to settle personal vendettas, says Sonke Gender Justice
Johannesburg – Sonke Gender Justice has joined the condemnation of law enforcement agencies in the arrest of Norma Gigaba for allegations of malicious damage and assault – charges her husband, former finance minister, Malusi Gigaba, laid against her.
Gigaba spent the weekend in prison after the Hawks arrested her last week Friday.
She has been accused of having caused damages of up to R100 000 to a luxury vehicle her husband borrowed from a friend.
However, Sonke on Tuesday joined its counterpart Wise 4 Africa in condemning the manner in which Gigaba has been treated and accused her husband of abusing state resources in separate incidents.
In condemning this, Sonke also made reference to Deputy Finance Minister Davido Masondo.
Masondo reportedly landed in trouble with the ANC after he allegedly approached the Hawks last year to protect his family from a woman he was believed to have had a relationship with. He had accused the women of extortion.
This led to the ANC’s integrity commission last Friday recommending that he be removed from his government leadership position.
“Both (Gigaba and Masondo) have used Hawks in two separate incidents to settle personal vendettas,” said Sonke in a statement.
Gigaba, meanwhile, appeared briefly at the Hatfield Magistrate's Court in Pretoria on Monday morning and was granted bail R5 000 bail which has been extended to September 14 when she is due to appear again.
“It appears that powerful men in the ruling elite have law enforcement officials on the speed dial, a privilege that millions of South African women who constantly have to look over their shoulders do not have.
“Sonke is concerned by this trend as if it is not condemned and act upon the abuse of power of government resources will intensify,” read the statement.
The group further accused the Hawks of willingly banding from its mandate to fight organised crime and corruption to “serve and protect men and reinforce a disturbing patriarchal status quo”.
“This abuse of state institutions not only highlights a worrying centralisation of power that favours the elite, but it is also an insult to all women who have been failed by police and the justice system
“We welcome the decision by the ANC’s integrity commission on the matter involving Dep Minister Masondo though it took them well over a year to come to this determination,” it said.
Wise 4 Africa director Brenda Madumise told the media on Monday her organisation would write to President Cyril Ramaphosa demanding an explanation on how Hawks got involved in an alleged crime that emanated from domestic violence.
“If South Africans are not outraged and enraged by that, then we are in trouble. So we are planning to write to the State President [Cyril Ramaphosa] of this country to explain to us why the Hawks [are involved] in this matter to settle or even address a domestic issue that really warranted the police to act on it, not the Hawks,” SABC online quoted Madumise.
Madumise told Independent Media that Wise 4 Africa had sent the letter to Ramaphosa on Tuesday morning.
She promised to send a copy of the letter to this reporter.
Hawks spokesperson Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudz has been approached for comment.
This story will be updated as soon as comment is obtained.