Jackson Mthembu Steenhusien

Minister in the Presidency, Jackson Mthembu / Photo: GCIS

Mthembu blasts ‘meddling’ Steenhuisen’s Integrity Commission comments

After Steenhuisen called the ANC Integrity Commission an ‘elaborate pantomime’, Mthembu has told the DA leader to mind his own business.

Jackson Mthembu Steenhusien

Minister in the Presidency, Jackson Mthembu / Photo: GCIS

Minister in the presidency Jackson Mthembu has lashed out at Democratic Alliance leader John Steenhuisen after his scathing remarks about the African National Congress’ (ANC’s) Integrity Commission and its capacity to root out corruption within the ruling party. 

Steenhuisen said that the commission is “sympathetic to its ANC cadres” and is merely an “elaborately staged pantomime” – remarks to which Mthembu responded by saying Steenhuisen should mind his own business. 

Steenhuisen’s comments come on the back of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement that the corruption-accused ANC Secretary General, Ace Magashule, will stand before the commission later this month. 

Steenhuisen’s damning assessment of ANC Integrity Commission  

Steenhuisen said the ANC treats the Integrity Commission as a “de facto court where the judges are sympathetic ANC comrades”, and said that too many corruption-accused ANC members, – including former disgraced Mayor of Ethekwini, Zandile Gumede – have been let off with a slap on the wrist instead of facing criminal charges. 

In early October, Gumede – who was removed from her position in 2019 in the face of a litany of tender corruption charges to the value of R400 million – appeared before the Integrity Commission with her lawyer in tow. 

“There has been no word of any action against her for her crimes since” said Steenhuisen. 

“This is not justice, it is merely the ANC’s portrayal of justice at the expense of our country.”  

Integrity Commission ‘an elaborately staged pantomime’  

He said that his party would not allow Mgashule to get away with the crimes he is accused of so easily. 

“The DA will not accept the ANC’s elaborately staged pantomime in which comrades are placed on a stage and given a slap on the wrist for South Africans to watch and applaud.”

He challenged Ramaphosa to forgo his ANC allegiances and ensure that justice is served. 

“I will only be applauding when the President has the guts to throw his comrades into a jail cell for the treasonous acts committed against our country. South Africa deserves nothing less.”

Mthembu: ‘Steenhuisen can learn a lot from the ANC’

Mthembu didn’t take Kindly to Steenhuisen’s appraisal of his party’s disciplinary process, and told Steenhuisen to stay in his lane. 

“The reported comments by the DA leader John Steenhisen on the ANC NEC approach on Secretary General, comrade Ace Magashule, is totally ill informed,” he tweeted on Tuesday. 

“We want to advice him to act in a [mature] manner and remove his nose from ANC matters. This is not a parliamentary matter.”

He said that Steenhuisen would do well to follow some of the ruling party’s guiding principles instead of getting involved in internal party politics. 

“Steenhuisen must and should observe the golden political unwritten rule of not meddling in other parties internal affairs . He can learn a lot from the ANC in this regard,” he said. 

Magashule facing charges of fraud and corruption

Magashule is set to appear before the Integrity Commission on 12 December, with Ramaphosa having delivered the news while summing up the events of the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting which took place from Sunday to Tuesday. 

The Hawks in the Free State issued Magashule with a warrant of arrest early last month in relation to the controversial R255 million Free State asbestos contract. It is alleged that dodgy dealings took place all while Magashule served as the province’s premier. Magashule made a court appearance at the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court shortly after the warrant was issued.