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Allegations in newspaper report against Lindiwe Sisulu are ‘baseless and false’ – spokesperson

Lindiwe Sisulu. (Rapport)

Lindiwe Sisulu. (Rapport)

  • Lindiwe Sisulu’s spokesperson says the minister is dismayed by the “baseless and false allegations against her published by the City Press”.
  • The report alleges that she delayed the appointments of top executives on the Amatola Water Board. 
  • Cyril Ramaphosa’s Cabinet reshuffle this week saw Sisulu shifted – she is now the minister of tourism.

Former water and sanitation minister Lindiwe Sisulu set the record straight regarding allegations that she delayed the appointments of top executives on the Amatola Water Board because her “preferred candidates” did not make the cut.

In a statement, Sisulu’s spokesperson, Steve Motale, said the minister noted “with utter disgust, the baseless and false allegations against her published by the City Press”.

“Minister Sisulu wishes to emphasise that she has, during her tenure as minister of human settlements, water and sanitation, never interfered in the operational affairs of the two departments and any of their entities, including the water boards.”

According to the City Press report, which was published on Sunday, an anonymous letter was sent to Parliament’s water and sanitation portfolio committee.

READ | Sisulu’s water wars

According to the letter, Sisulu’s adviser at Amatola Water, Mphumzi Mdekazi, requested R60 million from the department for drought relief, but received more. The letter suggests this was proof that an official from Sisulu’s office was trying to control Amatola’s affairs.

The report also stated that suspended Amatola Water deputy chairperson, Buhle Tonise, claimed the board’s acting chairperson, Zamikhaya Xalisa, told her that a candidate for the chief financial officer position was “directed by the minister’s people to meet him at a hotel prior to the interviews”.

Motale added that the allegations raised in the anonymous letter to Parliament was brought to Sisulu’s attention.

“She (Sisulu) immediately instituted an investigation, whose findings will form part of her handover report to the new water and sanitation minister, Mr Senzo Mchunu, who will decide whether or not he makes the report public.”

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Cabinet reshuffle, which took place earlier this week, resulted in Sisulu being shifted from her previous portfolio. She is now the minister of tourism.

ALSO READ | Lindiwe Sisulu aims to clean house

Motale said the allegations was an onslaught against Sisulu.

“Lies being peddled through the media is a desperate attempt by those implicated in corruption to evade the law. She [Sisulu] is fully aware that this is part of a sponsored political campaign by those wishing to destroy her politically.”

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