Former SAA Chairperson Dudu Myeni has slammed the portfolio committee on public enterprises in Parliament, which is investigating allegations of state capture at Eskom, for violating her rights and freedom as a sick South African.
Myeni, who was expected to face the committee along with Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba and the Gupta brothers, said she is however not shocked by the committee’s treatment as she has had no rights all her life.
Last week, Myeni informed the committee that she would not be able to attend the inquiry as she was too sick.
The Gupta brothers’ lawyer had previously indicated to committee Chairperson Zukiswa Rantho that they would not be able to participate in the inquiry on Tuesday as they are out of the country.
Myeni said all she was asking for from the committee was to be given an opportunity to recover and to have all necessary tests done to ensure that she is in good health.
She said it appeared that there was lack of support and sympathy from the committee as she did not get the sense from the committee chairperson that they wanted to afford her an opportunity to recover with dignity.
“When I called the acting chairperson, I did not get that sense but seemingly, I am stripped of my rights,” Myeni said in a letter to Rantho.
“Then if that is the case, I have serious difficulties and would need the protection of the law.”
“I am conscious of the fact that the right to human dignity is also extended to me as a person who is not well, and therefore, I had expected Parliament and its portfolio committee, as a constitutional centre of observance, protection and upholding the fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution, to show me compassion by extending me the right to human dignity in this difficult time of being sick.”
“Is this the way in which all the citizens of South Africa will be treated? Or is it only done to me? Am I now a suspect or a criminal?”
She said despite her submitting a written statement to the committee last week, it appeared that the committee was still treating her like a criminal.
“I presume that my rights as a sick person, who is entitled to human dignity and equality of all people in my situation shall be respected and I would not feel prejudiced and pressurised to appear before your committee prematurely.”
Myeni said she felt that she was not treated with dignity by the committee and she felt that she was being discriminated for reasons she could not comprehend.
“I feel like I am being treated like a criminal, which would thus be a violation of my own freedom. Is this done to all South Africans when they are not feeling well, they have no dignity.”