Van Rooyen allegedly asked staff to do his academic work

A former government staff member is alleging that the minister asked former staff members to do his school work

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Des van Rooyen has been accused of asking a former parliament staff members to do his academic work for him.

The minister came under scrutiny following his appointment as finance minister in December after former finance minister Nhlanhla Nene was axed.

Many people were shocked when the unknown Van Rooyen was appointed and questions were raised about whether he was qualified for the finance minister position.

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However, President Jacob Zuma defended his appointment, even though he only kept him in the position for only a couple of days.

Zuma succumbed to pressure and removed Van Rooyen from the position and re-appointed Pravin Gordhan as finance minister.

Defending his decision to appoint Van Rooyen, Zuma told delegates at the inaugural meeting of the Presidential Press Corps in Pretoria in February that Van Rooyen was the most qualified minister he had ever appointed, African News Agency reported at the time.

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“That thing caused such a havoc. It caused such havoc and people think Zuma just woke up one day and and took a decision. Some say he was told by some people [to appoint Van Rooyen as finance minister in December],” Zuma told delegates at the meeting.

“You know Van Rooyen is my comrade, MK [Umkhontho weSizwe] for that matter – where I come from. He’s a trained finance and economic comrade, more qualified than any minister I have ever appointed there, in the finance issue. Imagine if I had appointed a fellow who looks after cattle at Nkandla as finance minister?”

It has now come to light that Van Rooyen asked former Parliamentary Budget Office staff to assist him with his academic work, Business Day reports.

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The information was revealed by a former staff member to former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela. It was also submitted  to the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) by the staff member who is alleging that he was not promoted because he refused to help MPs with their academic work.