Deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo. Picture: VELI NHLAPO
Deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo. Picture: VELI NHLAPO

Former SAA board chair Dudu Myeni failed to turn up to a scheduled hearing at the state capture inquiry hearings on Tuesday. Instead, Myeni sent her lawyers, led by advocate Nqabayethu Buthelezi, to seek a postponement of the hearing of her evidence.

This did not go down well with the inquiry’s chair, deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo, who instructed the inquiry secretary to lay a criminal complaint against Myeni.

“Ms Myeni has not appeared today and there is no sufficient cause for that nonappearance. Ms Myeni’s conduct today is part of a pattern of a steadfast resistance to be accountable,” submitted evidence leader advocate Kate Hofmeyr.

“She effectively took the postponement for herself. It is time for the law to take its course.”

This will be the second criminal complaint against Myeni after it did the same last November when she unmasked a witness, whose identity was concealed by the inquiry.

Hofmeyer called for drastic steps to be taken against Myeni, saying  she had also defied parliament’s portfolio committee on public enterprises in April 2018 in a similar manner.

Then Myeni was invited to appear before the portfolio committee and account for the goings on at SAA. She, however, elected not to appear and sent an excuse just before her scheduled appearance.

She was then served with a summons, which she still defied.

This conduct irked the committee, which directed its chair to write to former speaker Baleka Mbete, requesting that a criminal charge be laid against her. Nothing much came from that request.

“What happened in parliament in 2018 should, with respect, not be repeated. There should be a criminal charge laid against Ms Myeni.”

Eskom workstream evidence leader advocate Pule Seleka concurred with Hofmeyr’s submission, saying Myeni’s behaviour had gone too far.

Myeni has also been implicated at the inquiry for sticking her nose into Eskom affairs when she had no business with the power utility. Seleka told the inquiry that after they sought her response to the evidence against her on Eskom, Myeni snubbed the inquiry and never responded.

“There is little to argue on the postponement application when the witness has arrogated to herself the postponement. This is completely unacceptable,” said Seleka.

Buthelezi attempted to protest, saying Myeni was not being defiant, but Zondo was having none of it.

The chair ordered that a criminal complaint be laid against Myeni, adding that Myeni should avail herself to give testimony virtually at 2pm on Tuesday.

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