“The Economic Freedom Fighters rejects with contempt the appointment of Ranjeni Munusamy as the political secretary to the Minister of Finance,” the EFF said in a statement.
JOHANNESBURG – The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) on Wednesday gave Treasury seven days to remove former journalist Ranjeni Munusamy as as political secretary to Finance Minister Tito Mboweni, saying it would approach the relevant authorities to see to her removal.
The EFF released a statement on Wednesday in response to the news that Munusamy was hired by Treasury, with the minister tweeting a picture of Munusamy on a digital meeting platform, calling them the “core MTBPS speech drafting team”.
The core MTBPS speech drafting Team meeting today, October 20, 2020. to work on how to frame the speech.This is how it works: based on the Cabinet budget fiscal framework,different teams in the National Treasury write chapters in the big document,the core team drafts the speech. pic.twitter.com/u92RuYXeNqAds
Tito Mboweni (@tito_mboweni) October 20, 2020
Treasury told Clement Manyathela on 702 on Wednesday that “it’s the prerogative of the ministry who he appoints to his team as per the prescripts of the Ministerial Handbook”.
However, in a statement, the EFF said, “The Economic Freedom Fighters rejects with contempt the appointment of Ranjeni Munusamy as the political secretary to the Minister of Finance, Tito Mboweni. Ranjeni Munusamy is an ex-journalist, ex-employee of the Friends of Jacob Zuma Trust and the recipient of inexplicable money from the intelligence slush funds.”
The party said that State institutions were “being infiltrated by a cabal of highly compromised individuals”.
The statement also listed “undisputed evidence” from a witnesses at the State Capture Commission of Inquiry One, who said Munusamy was on the payroll of an intelligence slush fund.
At the time, Munusamy requested permission to cross-examine the witness and later said she would not be doing so, and the evidence has not been disputed. The EFF said this contributed to murkiness around the ethics of her appointment to a government position.
“Munusamy has since gone undercover, effectively confirming that she has indeed received unexplained, unaccounted and unlawful money from the intelligence slush funds. For a Minister of Finance to employ such a discredited and compromised human being to such a serious responsibility is not only irresponsible, but it is also reckless, dangerous and outrightly irrational,” the statement read.
“The EFF is aware that there are so many discredited individuals in the National Treasury, but the appointment of Ranjeni Munusamy is taking it too far. We demand that the Minister of Finance must immediately discontinue any contractual and employment relationship with Ranjeni Munusamy until the, thus far solid and believable, allegations have been cleared beyond any reasonable doubt,” the EFF added.
The party also said the finance minister was an influential position in the country’s economic polices, and has influence on the “guidance of the entities” under Treasury.
CONTROVERSY AROUND MUNUSAMY
Munusamy was implicated by senior Hawks officer Kobus Roelofse, at the state capture commission in 2019. The witness claimed the former journalist received money to settle the balance she owed on a car from a slush fund of Crime Intelligence.
An amount of R143 621.78 was allegedly transferred into a Wesbank account to settle a vehicle which was registered in Munusamy’s name in 2008. She then applied to the Zondo Commission to cross-examine Roelofse.
But she later said she no longer intended to cross-examine the witness who implicated her.
Munusamy said she was willing to testify if she called to do so.
FRIENDS OF JACOB ZUMA?
Back in 2007, the former journalist managed a page called Friends of Jacob Zuma where she stated that the media had it out for the former president.