DA berates Pule

Communications minister Dina Pule has not answered any of the 29 questions posed to her in Parliament this year, claims the opposition.

Read time 2min 10sec
Communications minister Dina Pule has been accused of hiding information from Parliament in a statement issued by DA shadow minister of communications Marian Shinn.
Communications minister Dina Pule has been accused of hiding information from Parliament in a statement issued by DA shadow minister of communications Marian Shinn.

The official opposition, the Democratic Alliance (DA), is set to write to National Assembly speaker Max Sisulu and government business leader Kgalema Motlanthe over communications minister Dina Pule's failure to answer questions in Parliament.

In a statement released by DA shadow minister of communications Marian Shinn, the party alleges Pule has not answered a single parliamentary question this year. "Minister Pule has repeatedly demonstrated her ineptitude as a Cabinet minister and her clear aversion of parliamentary oversight is further reason for president [Jacob] Zuma to fire her," says the opposition.

The DA alleges that not a single one of the 29 questions posed to Pule in 2013 - 18 questions by the DA and 11 by other opposition parties - have been answered.

The questions posed by the DA include:

* The status of negotiations or legal challenges surrounding the removal of the head of South African Broadcasting Corporation's news and current affairs unit and the CFO.
* Whether a forensic investigation was commissioned into the financial mismanagement at the Universal Service and Access Agency.
* Whether bonuses were paid to senior officials in her department or any of the entities reporting to the department.
* How many companies or entities had approved operation licences issued by the Independent Communications Authority of SA (ICASA) in 2012, how many are currently up to date with licence payment and how many are in arrears.
* The cost of her department's failed defence against etv's court challenge on the set-top box access control system.
* The outcome of the National Intelligence Agency's investigation into ICASA councillor William Stucke.

In addition, notes the DA, other questions that remain unanswered are:

* Whether her department has informed the International Telecommunications Union about the fact that South Africa would not meet the cut-off date for analogue transmissions.
* Whether progress has been made with the finalisation of the specifications for set-top box manufacturing and when manufacturing of decoders will commence.

"It is clear that minister Pule is trying to hide information from Parliament. This is unacceptable and an affront to Parliament's constitutionally enshrined mandate to hold the executive to account," says the statement.

The communications department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Have your say
Facebook icon
Youtube play icon