Parly to demand answers from Muthambi over flights for friends, family

A report says that taxpayers paid at least R300,000 for Muthambi’ s guests to attend her budget speech.

FILE: Minister of Public Service and Administration Faith Muthambi. Picture: GCIS

CAPE TOWN - Parliament's Public Service and Administration Committee says it will be demanding answers about the costs incurred to fly a contingent of Minister Faith Muthambi's family and friends to Cape Town, during Parliament budget votes.

This follows a Sunday newspaper report that taxpayers paid at least R300,000 for Muthambi’ s guests to attend her budget speech.

Chairperson of the Parliament's portfolio committee Makhosi Khoza says the report is concerning in light of austerity measures imposed by the Treasury.

It's alleged that the minister not only flew down her guests at the cost of taxpayers, but that she also hired staff without following proper procedure since taking over the Department of Public Service and Administration.

The committee says it’s concerned by the media report and will be asking the department to provide rationale for the expenditure.

She was handed the portfolio during President Jacob Zuma's Cabinet reshuffle earlier this year in the wake of the debacle at SABC during her tenure as Communications Minister.

The parliamentary committee says it also intends probing allegations of unfair recruitment processes.

It says it stands by its position on the prudent spending of taxpayers’ money, especially in a department that should set the standard for the entire public service.

(Edited by Refilwe Pitjeng)