The national assembly has withdrawn the nomination of eight candidates for the council of communications regulator Icasa after allegations surfaced that one of the candidates is an ex-convict.
This follows a report that one of the candidates, Thami Ntenteni, has a criminal record and has served time in prison for culpable homicide related to a vehicle accident in the 1990s that left one person dead.
Ntenteni is one of eight names shortlisted by parliament for five vacant council seats at Icasa. The others are Botlenyana Mokhele, Dimakatso Qocha, Lumko Mtimde, Yengwayo Kutta, Peter Zimri, Keabetswe Modimoeng and Paris Mashile.
According to Davis, legislation prevents anyone convicted after 1993 of a schedule 1 offence — this includes culpable homicide — from being appointed to the MDDA’s board or to Icasa’s council.
According to reports at the time, Ntenteni was sentenced to as much as seven years in prison following a car accident in which a woman died and three people were injured. He was also convicted of driving while under the influence of alcohol.
President Jacob Zuma appointed Ntenteni to the board of the MDDA on Friday, 19 June, after parliament recommended him for the position earlier in the month. The national assembly was scheduled to consider Ntenteni’s appointment to Icasa on Tuesday.
“The DA welcomes the national assembly’s decision to withdraw the portfolio committee’s report recommending eight candidates for the Icasa council,” Davis said in a statement on Tuesday evening.
“The ANC agreed to postpone the matter following the DA’s declaration in the house that suggested … Ntenteni has a criminal record that renders him ineligible for the Icasa council.”
Attempts by TechCentral to reach Ntenteni, through the MDDA, for comment proved fruitless.
However, a letter from communications portfolio committee chair Joyce Moloi-Moropa, and seen by TechCentral, suggests that the State Security Agency has vetted and cleared him.
But Davis said it’s difficult to believe this given the reports in the public domain about Ntenteni.
“The DA cannot support Ntenteni’s appointment until we have answers to all the questions relating to his criminal record.” — © 2015 NewsCentral Media