Parliament approves Lottery board chair shortlist

Opposition parties object to the inclusion of Frank Chikane

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Photo of Parliament

Parliament has finally voted on and approved a shortlist for a new chair of the scandal-ridden National Lotteries Commission. Archive photo: Ashraf Hendricks

The 18-month-long stop-start process to appoint a new National Lotteries Commission (NLC) board chairman took a major step forward on Wednesday when Parliament voted to accept a report listing four candidates for the position.

The four candidates are Dr Barney Pityana, Terry Tselane, Reverend Frank Chikane, and Themba Dlamini.

The report will now be sent to Trade, Industry and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel to appoint one of the candidates.

GroundUp has reported extensively on corruption at the NLC, especially in the awarding of multi-million grants during Alfred Nevhutanda’s tenure as board chairperson.

A new report, prepared by Parliament’s Trade, Industry and Competition Portfolio Committee, recommended four candidates. The original three-person list submitted to Parliament last year was sent back to the portfolio committee after it expired at the end of 2021 before it could be debated.

In January this year, former NLC board member Muthuhadini Madzivhandila died, leaving only two candidates for Patel to consider for the position: human rights lawyer Barney Pityana, and former deputy chairperson of the Independent Electoral Commission Terry Tselane.

Revered Frank Chikane, former director-general in the office of former president Thabo Mbeki, and Themba Dlamini, former CEO of the Public Protector, were additions to the new list.

When candidates were originally interviewed by the portfolio committee, Tselane was scored the highest, followed by Dlamini in second place. Pityana and Chikane were the fourth- and fifth-placed candidates.

But it was not plain sailing in Parliament on Wednesday. The DA, the EFF and Freedom Front Plus rejected the report because they disagreed with the process that added Chikane as a candidate.

But the vote proceeded, and Chikane remained on the shortlist.

Also on Wednesday, Parliament debated Chikane’s nomination for Inspector General for Intelligence. But the post was not filled after his nomination failed to achieve a required two-thirds majority vote.

TOPICS:  National Lotteries Commission Parliament

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