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S/African opposition wants lockdown offside minister fired

South Africa’s main opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) party on Wednesday called on President Cyril Ramaphosa to sack Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams for violating the lockdown regulations and endangering the lives of others.Apart from dismissing her, the president should also lay a criminal complaint against the minister as an example to the rest of South Africans who break regulations meant to stop the pandemic from spreading, the DA said.

The opposition party’s rant comes after Ndabeni-Abrahams and former Higher Education and Training Deputy Minister Mduduzi Manana posted a picture on social media of themselves and friends having lunch at Manana’s house in Johannesburg.

The decision by the minister to visit Manana’s house was in violation of a ban on non-essential social movements as spelled out in the 21-day lockdown’s stay-at-home regulations now in their second week.

Following a social media outcry on Tuesday, Ramaphosa summoned the minister to a meeting where he suspended her for two months – of which will be without pay.

But the DA said Ramaphosa’s move was not good enough considering that the majority of South Africans have obeyed the regulations and some had lost their jobs in doing so by staying home, while others had been brutalised by the security agents for breaking the law.

“He must set an example as the President of South Africa that lawlessness, while our country deals with a global pandemic, will not be tolerated regardless of who carries it out.

“He therefore ought to lay a criminal complaint against Ndabeni-Abrahams, a person who he appointed as a Minister and member of his Cabinet, and he must go a further step by removing her from his Cabinet,” the DA demanded.

Published on 28.04.2020

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