Johannesburg – The decision by Judge Raymond Zondo, the chairman of the State Capture Commission, to lay criminal charges against erstwhile SAA chairperson Dudu Myeni for exposing the name of a whistleblower sends the right message, that in the struggle for transparency and accountability, witnesses play an invaluable role.
It is now in the province of law enforcement and the judiciary to apply impartial justice and ensure that whistleblowers and witnesses are protected, and the rule of law upheld. Myeni had no problem refusing to answer simple questions under the guise of fear of implicating herself but felt brazen enough to reveal the identity of a witness whose name Zondo had clearly indicated should not be made public.
Mr X’s testimony implicates Myeni and former president Jacob Zuma’s foundation but his identity is being concealed to protect the integrity of the investigation. Mr X also testified about corruption at the Mhlathuze Water Board, which Myeni previously chaired and her son’s company also received payments from.
The commission began its work in 2018 and Zondo has been asking for witnesses to come forward and assist the inquiry.
Myeni’s “blunder” has the effect of discouraging witnesses from coming forward, at the commission. It can have a ripple effect on the entire judicial system Myeni and her ilk should be taken to task so that others don’t recklessly disregard rules set by presiding officers.
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