The DA filed criminal charges against Deputy President Paul Mashatile at the Cape Town police station on Monday.
This follows President Cyril Ramaphosa’s refusal to address the DA’s demand that Mashatile be fired.
The president was urged to remove Mashatile from the cabinet when the DA brought him a dossier full of accusations of corruption on February 2.
The Presidency retorted, nevertheless, that any proof of malfeasance ought to be directed towards the appropriate authorities rather than the Union Building.
Mashatile is accused of corruption spanning nearly 20 years, beginning during his tenure as the Gauteng MEC for human settlements.
The allegations against Mashatile involve improperly benefiting from state tenders through connections with friends and family.
It is specifically claimed that while Mashatile was serving as MEC for human settlements, significant loans from the Gauteng Partnership Fund were given to Nonkwelo Investment, a business connected to his family.
It is also alleged that the deputy president lives a luxurious life funded by the tenderpreneurs he enabled.
Speaking to the media on Monday, DA leader John Steenhuisen criticised the president for failing to take action against corruption within his government, alleging that Ramaphosa has not fulfilled the promises he made at the beginning of his term in office.
“To date, the president has remained completely unresponsive to any of the allegations and refuses to answer questions around his appointment of Mashatile as deputy president,” said Steenhuisen.
“It comes as no surprise to us that the president has once again failed to act against members of his party who are facing these particular serious charges.
“It follows the fact that 97 members of his party, including members of the executive, were named in the Zondo commission and remain in office without any consequences.”
He said that even as Mashatile’s scandal rocked the Presidency, Ramaphosa kept acting as if everything was fine.
He pointed out that at the beginning of his term, Ramaphosa pledged to subject all his cabinet members to lifestyle audits to ensure adherence to legal means and prevent criminal activities.
Had these audits been conducted, Steenhuisen said, issues like the allegations against the deputy president would have been addressed proactively.
“If we want to root out corruption and maladministration in this country, then we have to commit to it. Not just talking about it, but doing it.”