ANC to discuss payment claims with MP Vincent Smith
The ANC caucus in parliament will speak to MP Vincent Smith as soon as possible over allegations he received monthly payments from controversial facilities management group Bosasa over the past three years, while the DA is reporting the matter to parliament’s ethics committee.
City Press reported on Sunday the MP had been paid "at least" R670,000 by Bosasa over the past three years and had accepted security installations at his home valued at R200,000.
Smith confirmed some of the payments to City Press but said they were personal loans and he had done nothing in return.
ANC chief whip Jackson Mthembu told Business Day that the matter will be discussed with Smith as soon as possible but that the party’s confidence in him is unshaken.
He also questioned the timing and motive of the allegations. Smith was appointed last week to head parliament’s portfolio committee on justice. He is also chair of the constitutional review committee, embroiled in the debate on land expropriation without compensation.
If he did indeed receive money from Bosasa, this would represent a serious conflict of interest and be highly inappropriateJohn Steenhuisen
Smith, who denied the payments were untoward, said on Sunday that he will await the outcome of engagements within the ANC before making any further comments.
DA chief whip John Steenhuisen said on Sunday that he will report Smith to parliament’s ethics committee, as the company had in the past secured more than R10m in contracts with the government.
"Smith had oversight of this department when he chaired the correctional services portfolio committee in 2014, as well as through his membership of the standing committee on public accounts," he said.
"If he did indeed receive money from Bosasa, this would represent a serious conflict of interest and be highly inappropriate," Steenhuisen said.
In November 2017, the National Prosecuting Authority was reportedly deciding whether to prosecute Bosasa executives and former civil servants for corruption at the department of correctional services. The Special Investigating Unit in 2009 found that the company bribed senior correctional services officials to win more than R1bn in tenders.