Fri. Oct 18th, 2019

Nomvula Mokonyane: What you need to know about Parliament Chair of Chairpersons

ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule said on Monday that Nomvula Mokonyane will be Parliament’s Chair of Chairs. Here’s what it means for the controversial former Minister of Environmental Affairs.

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Nomvula Mokonyane has been nominated as Parliament Chair of Chairpersons (or just Chair of Chairs in short). This was announced shortly after the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting held on Monday.

What is the Chair of Chairs?

The Parliament Chair of Chairpersons will implement policies, directives and guidelines with regards to scheduling and coordination of committee meetings.

This also includes general management of all National Assembly committees and subcommittees. Mokonyane will oversee several committee programs and ensure that concerns from the public are attended to.

In addition, she will assess committee reports and assist with coordinating committee budgets and business plans. Other duties include monitoring committee expenditure and authorise proposed committee expenditure after legislative approval has been obtained.

Does Mokonyane still have a position in cabinet?

No, she does not. She lost cabinet post as the former minister, but this is not a demotion per se. Instead, Mokonyane was just redeployed to another senior position in Parliament.

She was appointed as the Minister of Water and Sanitation on 25 May 2014 until January 2018, after which she was appointed as Minister of Communications from February 2018 until November 2018.

Mokonyane then served as Minister of Environment Affairs from November 2018.

Nomvula Mokonyane’s controversies

During her term as minister of water affairs and sanitation, Mokonyane spearheaded the Highlands Water project, but somehow increased the project’s proposed budget from R22 billion to R26 billion. This, at the expense of taxpayers.

She also delayed progress by more than a year. The project was initially set to be completed by 2024, but the date of completion has been moved to 2025.

At the time, Mokonyane said she delayed the project because more Black-owned companies needed to come onboard. She was also involved in the merger of the Umgeni and Mhlathuze boards in KwaZulu-Natal.

And earlier this year, Angelo Agrizzi said during the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture that Mokonyane reportedly received R50 000 cash per month from Bosassa.

As reported by Sowetan Live, Mokonyane denied the allegations and sent a letter to the commission earlier this month, stating that she would like to cross-examine Agrizzi.

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