The embattled Western Cape MEC for Public Works and Transport spoke out for the first time on Saturday after he was suspended over a qualifications scandal. Picture: Western Cape Government/Supplied
The embattled Western Cape MEC for Public Works and Transport spoke out for the first time on Saturday after he was suspended over a qualifications scandal. Picture: Western Cape Government/Supplied

Madikizela blasts DA for double standards over his qualifications saga

By Tshego Lepule Time of article published Apr 18, 2021

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Cape Town - Maybe there are “individuals within the party who see us all as experiments”, says suspended DA Western Cape leader Bonginkosi Madikizela.

The embattled Western Cape MEC for Public Works and Transport spoke out for the first time on Saturday after he was suspended over a qualifications scandal.

Madikizela said he believes there are individuals within the party driving his demise each time he contests leadership positions either within the DA or in the DA-led government in Western Cape.

He also claimed wrong doers within the party were not treated equally as it depended on who is willing to be “controlled”.

Madikizela was suspended for two weeks by Premier Alan Winde this week after it emerged that he had not completed the BCom degree in human resources listed in his CV - an occurrence Madikizela claims was an error.

Last year, he was also investigated by the party for allegations that he was involved in a plot to assassinate his opponent for the position of provincial DA leader, Masizole Mnqasela.

“What I have observed is that there are certain individuals playing God with people’s lives, use them at will and once they no longer serve a purpose, throw them out into the woods. That is how vicious these people are,” said Madikizela.

“These people are terrified of the rise of anyone they can’t control. Every time I contest I go through something similar. Maybe there are individuals who see us all as experiments when they believe they cannot control you. These are people who believe they are the DA and hold all the power.”

“I received a number of messages of support from white, black, coloured and Indian colleagues who say if I leave, these people win,” he added.

“I did some serious introspection this week asking myself if this was worth sticking around for but the messages I received, not just from the party, but people who are affected by the work I do in service to communities.

“And I speak about the double standards as well where when people err (they are not treated equally). Do you know how many people have done worse things, this is why I have said if they are willing to come after me for this, are they willing to do the same to others? But it depends on us as party members to drive this and ensure that there is equal treatment for all.”

Allegations surfaced over the weekend over the qualifications of the party’s chief whip in Parliament, Natasha Mazzone, after reports surfaced that she had been listed as having legal qualifications when she was elected as the DA’s deputy federal council chairperson.

But Mazzone and DA leader, John Steenhuisen have refuted allegations that she lied about her qualifications.

Political analyst Zweli Ndevu said Madikizela’s qualifications saga speaks to a bigger problem within the party.

“The process of vetting candidates has been flawed or the outcomes were not a true reflection. Secondly how many people within the party have been dishonest? This could be a tip of the iceberg (and) consistency in the treatment of the accused is important,” he said.

“There is a need for a qualification audit but also the bigger question is what Madikizela is pointing now, being used and let go when one is no longer useful. We know that the DA has a history of taking out black leaders when they are no longer needed - Mazibuko, Maimane and Tony Leon’s book is another confirmation of this point.”

Weekend Argus

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