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South Africa: Court Grants Corrupt Parliament Speaker, Bail

Parliament speaker in South Africa accused of corruption, given bail

Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, the 67-year-old Speaker of Parliament of South Africa, is accused of 12 counts of corruption and one count of money laundering.

She turned herself in to a police station this morning and made her first court appearance. Just one day prior to her arraignment, she had resigned as defense minister in response to an investigation into possible graft.

She unsuccessfully argued in court earlier this week to stop the police from detaining her. Shortly after the charges became public, a Pretoria judge granted her bail.

Mapisa-Nqakula has repudiated any misconduct. There was a postponement of the case until June 4. She faces charges of accepting bribes in exchange for contract awards while serving as the defense minister.

She declared in court that she had no criminal predisposition and denied any misconduct. However, attorney Bheki Manyathi informed the Pretoria Magistrates’ Court in South Africa that Ms. Mapisa-Nqakula was the target of “ample evidence.”

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Leading attorney Bheki Manyathi informed the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court that she was facing charges on twelve counts of money laundering and corruption. Magistrate Anna Oosthuizen declared in a decision that “the court is satisfied that the amount initially suggested (for bail) of 50,000 rand ($2,678) is adequate in this matter.” Mapisa-condition Nqakula’s passport surrender is part of her bail requirements.

Ms. Mapisa-Nqakula resigned on Wednesday following weeks of investigations, although she clarified that this wasn’t a “indication or admission of guilt.” She said she was unable to continue in her post due to the “seriousness” of the investigation. In relation to the corruption probe, a special police unit searched her Johannesburg residence last month.

Speaker in 2021 was the seasoned member of the African National Congress (ANC). She held the position of defense minister for seven years before to that. The attorneys for Ms. Mapisa-Nqakula submitted a request for a court order last week, claiming that Ms. Mapisa-Nqakula’s detention would violate her dignity.

Judges turned down her request on Tuesday, stating that the case was not urgent and that they could not make assumptions about an arrest that had not yet occurred.

According to the Business Day newspaper, Ms. Mapisa-Nqakula is accused of obtaining a tender to carry army equipment back to South Africa from other parts of the continent by making multiple demands for money totaling $120,000 (£96,000) from the owner of a company.

This corruption scandal is the most recent in a long string that has rocked the ANC of South Africa

The case is unique in that Ms. Mapisa-Nqakula resigned rather quickly.

In some ANC quarters, her decision to step down probably caused relief because it spared the party from having to defend her in public.

Officially applauding her choice, the ANC stated that it appreciated her dedication to upholding the organization’s reputation. For the ANC, the case against the former speaker is, at best, humiliating and, at worst, extremely harmful.

There is a rough election coming up at the end of May, according to polls, and the party may lose its majority for the first time. After years of accusations of corruption and misappropriation of public funds, the ANC—which has ruled since 1994—has found itself at the center of a major electoral controversy.


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