Corruption-accused Zizi Kodwa will be an MP – ANC

Published Jun 24, 2024


The ANC has confirmed that its corruption-accused former minister of Sports, Arts and Culture, Zizi Kodwa, will be sworn in as a member of Parliament (MP) on Tuesday, June 25. Kodwa will be joined at the swearing-in ceremony by uMkhonto weSizwe Party members who missed the first sitting of Parliament last week.

The ANC says the step-aside rule, which will see him leave Parliament if he is found guilty, will kick in after his case is concluded.

ANC spokesperson Mahlengi Bhengu-Motsiri told IOL that it was true that Kodwa will be sworn in this week by the newly elected speaker Thoko Didiza.

Bhengu-Motsiri said Kodwa could only be given lesser roles while they were waiting for the court decision on whether he was guilty or innocent.

“If the court rules are in his favour, he will be eligible to take the ministerial positions again but if the case rules otherwise then he will have to step aside completely,” she said.

This means Kodwa will now be a backbencher in the National Assembly.

The ANC introduced the step-aside rule to fight corruption in 2017.

This was to ensure that members who were involved in wrongdoing were held accountable, that due process was followed in disciplinary, investigative or prosecutorial procedures, and to protect the organisation against reputational damage as part of the renewal process of the ANC.

Several ANC members have been suspended as a result of the regulation since it was adopted at the 54th National Conference of the ANC in 2017, most notably former ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule, who was later expelled from the organisation.

It was implemented in 2022 to forbid impacted members from running for internal leadership positions.

Bhengu-Motsiri said the Integrity Commission would also decide on Kodwa’s future once the court’s ruling was announced.

Kodwa missed the first sitting of Parliament after he resigned as minister, voluntarily stepping aside from his role following the corruption scandal.

He appeared in the Palm Ridge Magistrates Court earlier this month after he was arrested with his co-accused, former EOH boss Jehan Mackay in connection with allegations that he received about R1.7 million in bribes.

But the two have been released on R30,000 bail each.

In his space, President Cyril Ramaphosa appointed Maropene Ramokgopa as acting Sports Minister until the announcement of the new cabinet, after the May 29 election.

Kodwa’s swearing-in ceremony will include former president Jacob Zuma’s MK Party members who refused to attend the first sitting of Parliament.

About 58 MK Party members will be sworn in on Tuesday.

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