Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams has backtracked on her decision not to appoint a sixth new ICASA councillor.

In a letter sent to the Speaker of the National Assembly, Ndabeni-Abrahams informed Parliament that she has now appointed the sixth member of the ICASA council.

Ndabeni-Abrahams had previously tried to override the decision of the National Assembly by only appointing five of the six required new ICASA councillors, an act which was criticised as unlawful.

DA MP Phumzile Van Damme said that Ndabeni-Abraham’s decision contravened the Constitution, ICASA Act, the Executive Members’ Act, and the Powers and Privileges Act.

The Minister has subsequently acquiesced and has elected to appoint the sixth member of the council.

“Ndabeni-Abrahams’ bizarre and unlawful conduct during the appointment process to fill six vacancies on the ICASA Council has been nothing short of embarrassing,” Van Damme said.

“That she remains a Minister is tragic. We, therefore, reiterate our call for the President, Cyril Ramaphosa to fire her.”

The DA is concerned that if Ndabeni-Abrahams remains in her position, South Africa’s goal to grow and support the digital economy will be at risk.

“The sector requires a Minister with a head firmly set on their shoulders,” Van Damme said.

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