Professor Hlengiwe Mkhize – Out of Home Affairs now at Higher Learning
PARLIAMENT’S Select Committee on Social Services issued a statement a few minutes ago raising concern over Home Affairs Minister Hlengiwe Mkhize’s silence in the suspension of Director General Mkuseli Apeleni.
Unbeknown to the Committee seemingly, was that Mkhize was no longer at the helm of Home Affairs at the time they were penning their statement. She’s just been appointed to minister of higher education and training.
Mkhize announced the precautionary suspension in a short statement in September but did not give reasons.
The Select Committee’s statement released a few minutes ago
The Select Committee on Social Services is concerned that the Minister of Home Affairs has not shared with the Committee the reasons for the suspension of the Director-General.
While the Committee acknowledges that the Director-General has taken the matter for judicial review and that the matter is between an employer and employee, the Committee is of the view that the Minister could have taken the Committee and Parliament into its confidence about the suspension, especially as it relates to service delivery. This is because the Director-General, as the accounting officer according to the Public Finance Management Act, is critical to service delivery and governance of the department.
“The rules of Parliament make provision for Committees to hold close meetings where they deem necessary. This matter could have been handled in this manner if the Minister was reluctant to share the information in an open setting due to the judicial review the Director-General has undertaken,” said Mrs Cathy Dlamini, the Chairperson of the Committee.
The Committee is hopeful that the Minister will urgently inform the Committee of the reasons for the Director-General’s suspension.
ISSUED BY PARLIAMENTARY COMMUNICATION SERVICES ON BEHALF OF THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE SELECT COMMITTEE ON SOCIAL SERVICES, MS CATHY DLAMINI