Deputy General Secretary of the South African Communist Party (SACP) Solly Mapaila says he has deposed an affidavit with the Inspector General of Intelligence against President Jacob Zuma over his controversial midnight Cabinet reshuffle earlier this year in March.
Mapaila was speaking during a panel discussion on corruption which was held in Rivonia, northern Johannesburg on Sunday night, He said Zuma had lied to the SACP during a meeting with the party’s leaders when he told them he axed Pravin Gordhan and Mcebisi Jonas from the finance ministry over a so-called intelligence report that alleged the pair were collaborating and planning to overthrow the government.
“I have noticed many lies being told by the president. That’s why I can say now in public for the first time that I’ve deposed an affidavit he lied to us. How could he tell us the truth and lie to the public? So I had to take that step which I felt is important that we bring him to the commitment of our movement,” he said.
This comes after Zuma reshuffled his Cabinet at the end of March, sacking Gordhan and Jonas, he then issued a statement backing the decision he made saying the move had been driven by a need for renewal.
Mapaila maintains that Zuma had told SACP and ANC officials that he had based the decision on an intelligence report.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe and deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa have spoken publicly about the intelligence report‚ which apparently accused Gordhan of being part of a plan to overthrow the government.
The functions of the inspector-general of intelligence are contained in the Intelligence Oversight Act of 1994 and include monitoring the country’s intelligence services to ensure they comply with the Constitution and relevant legislation in relation to intelligence and counter-intelligence.
The duty of inspector-general is to watch over transgressions of the Constitution within the intelligence services and investigating complaints from members of the public regarding governmental concerns.