NEWS & ANALYSIS

ANC must not allow Manana to escape accountability – John Steenhuisen

DA Chief Whip says if parliament can't hold to account a convicted abuser, then it is up to his party

ANC must not allow Manana to escape accountability

24 July 2018

The DA notes that former Deputy Minister of Higher Education and Training, Mduduzi Manana, has resigned as an ANC Member of Parliament. This resignation is nothing more than an attempt to evade accountability by not going before Parliament’s Joint Committee on Ethics and Members' Interests tomorrow.

Manana has been defiant in his refusal to resign from Parliament since he was convicted of three counts of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm in September 2017 and avoided serving 12 months in jail by paying a R100,000. Now he seems to have jumped before being pushed, resigning less than 24 hours before having to face the Ethics Committee.

If Parliament cannot hold Manana, a convicted abuser, to account then it is up to his party, the ANC, to hold him accountable.

If the ANC is truly serious about bringing an end to the scourge of violence against women and children they must refer him to their internal ethics committee and remove him from all positions he currently holds in the party, including as member of the ANC’s National Executive Committee.

The DA fears that Manana’s resignation is little more than a temporary face-saving exercise and that the ANC will later bring him back into the fold after a period out of the public gaze. Indeed, Manana would not be the first ANC public representative to be brought back following the conviction of a crime. As illustration, the ANC appointed fellow NEC member and convicted fraudster Tony Yengeni as chairperson of its working group on crime and corruption at ANC's election manifesto workshop only last month.

Manana’s decision to donate a portion of his pension to charitable causes will not undo the emotional and physical harm to his victims. What Manana is trying to sell his resignation as a selfless act, is in fact nothing more than an attempt to avoid facing the consequences of his deplorable actions.

As we head into Women’s Month, the ANC has an opportunity to show that they are serious about combatting violence against women by removing Manana.

Issued by John SteenhuisenChief Whip of the Democratic Alliance, 24 July 2018