The Public Protector, Adv. Thuli Madonsela, has confirmed that her Good Governance and Integrity branch will launch a preliminary investigation into the abuse of state funds by Members of Provincial Legislatures (MPLs) who have been bending the rules around chauffeur-driven vehicles.
In April, the DA brought to the attention of the Public Protector the fact that MPLs in the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial legislature were abusing a policy designed to support members with special needs to use chauffeur-driven luxury cars at the state’s expense. We also highlighted the fact that ANC MPLs in Limpopo are being chauffeur-driven in luxury Chrysler Voyagers for personal and party-political purposes.
The pressure applied by the DA has already prompted a much tougher policy on the use of chauffeur-driven vehicles in the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial legislature. The Public Protector should, however, determine whether there has been improper conduct on the part of specific public representatives and recommend appropriate sanctions, where required.
We welcome the decision by the Public Protector to look into this matter.
Public spending should ultimately benefit ordinary South Africans. Public representatives should not be allowed to bend the rules to pilfer from the public purse.