On Tuesday morning, the Democratic Alliance laid criminal charges against Blade Nzimande amid allegations of corruption at the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS).
As per Jacaranda FM, Nzimande is in the middle of a report by the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) that contains a leaked audio recording of an alleged meeting between Nzimande, NSFAS board chairperson Ernest Khosa, and a service provider.
OUTA assert that the recordings prove the minister and Khosa received kickbacks from companies doing business with the student fund.
Nzimande briefed the media in Tshwane on Monday. He pushed back against the allegations and accused Outa of conspiring with companies whose contracts were terminated after an investigation into alleged tender irregularities involving fired CEO Andile Nongogo.
Nzimande said his lawyers are looking through the report.
The DA’s Karabo Khakhau says the party demands accountability from Parliament and Nzimande.
“We, as the Democratic Alliance, take this seriously because the people who are affected by the criminal activities in this department are millions of students who depend on a non-corrupt government to fund their studies for their future.
“We know that we have over R1.1 billion funding shortfall, which means that in this academic year, we will have an additional 87,000 who will not be funded, in addition to the over 20,000 students whose fundings were interrupted in the previous academic year.
Many political parties have recommended law enforcement authorities investigate, as OUTA’s Rudie Heyneke explained: “The Special Investigating Unit has got a proclamation to investigate NSFAS, and we shared these recordings with them last year in December. They are aware of it, and I am very sure they will be instituting their investigation.
“We will also lay criminal charges, and we will also report this to the South African Revenue Services for them to look at the tax affairs of the contractors, and then we will also ask the auditor-general to look at the contracts and audit them with a very sharp eye.”
Nzimande said while he will cooperate with the relevant legal and ethical processes, he has plans to fight back against the allegations.
“I couldn’t just sit back and not go to my lawyers when are being turned into sitting ducks, just because we are ministers, for every Tom, Dick, and Harry to insult us as they wish.”
KHOSA DEATH THREATS
Nzimande also said, “This campaign now unfortunately now includes threats to the life, person, and security of the NSFAS chairperson who has been getting death threats.”
Picture: X / Our_DA
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