Former Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini has been found guilty of perjury. Dlamini was charged for lying under oath at an inquiry into the social grants crisis in 2017.
Magistrate Betty Khumalo found that the prosecution had proved its case beyond a reasonable doubt and that the former minister had lied under oath.
Dlamini’s defence team argued last month that she should not be found guilty of perjury as Section 38 proceedings, such as the Ngoepe Inquiry, were not formal judicial ones.
Dlamini is accused of lying under oath during the inquiry instituted by the Constitutional Court into the 2017 social grants debacle at the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa).
She previously pleaded not guilty to the charge and denied giving false information to the inquiry, saying that if she did, it was unintentional.
Dlamini denied under oath during the inquiry into the Sassa grants crisis that she appointed parallel work streams at the agency and that they reported to her.
The inquiry found Dlamini had concealed the extent of her involvement in the debacle and she was charged with perjury after the apex court forwarded the inquiry’s report to the director of public prosecutions.
The trial began in November last year, where Dlamini pleaded not guilty to the charge.
She also later launched a bid to have the case against her discharged but failed.
In its closing arguments last month, the State said that it had proven its case against Dlamini, while her lawyer argued that the State had failed to call material witnesses during trial.
More to follow…