Joemat-Pettersson to pay back R150,000

The minister’s spokesperson Palesa Mokomele promised that Joemat-Pettersson will return the cash.

Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson says she will pay back R150,000 to refund the state’s funds.

JOHANNESBURG - Agriculture Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson on Wednesday promised to pay back more than R150,000 of state money after she was found guilty of excessive and wasteful spending.

On Monday, Public Protector Thuli Madonsela found the minister guilty on at least two incidents of wasting taxpayers' money.

One case involved a guesthouse stay that cost R400,000.

Joemat-Pettersson was also found to have spent R150,000 on flights for her children and their au pair.

Madonsela recommended the minister pay back R150,000 to the Department of Agriculture and called on President Jacob Zuma to reprimand her.

Joemat-Pettersson's spokesperson, Palesa Mokomele, promised that the minister will return the cash.

"The minister will repay the funds and is taking full responsibility, but we also want to state that the minister was poorly advised."

Joemat-Pettersson argued that she was badly advised when she chose to fly her children and au pair back to South Africa, from Sweden, in 2009.

Madonsela added the minister's chief of staff at the time, Bafedile Bopape, should also be disciplined.