Hefty fine awaits Bathabile Dlamini – legal expert

Hefty fine awaits Bathabile Dlamini – legal expert

Former social development minister Bathabile Dlamini may escape jail time following her conviction on a charge of perjury over her testimony at Constitutional Court hearing into SASSA crisis back in 2017.

Bathabile Dlamini SASSA_gcis
Photo: GCIS

According to law expert, Ulrich Roux few circumstances will be taken into consideration.

“There is no minimum sentence applicable, her personal circumstances, the severity of the offense, and a message sent to the society when she is sentenced. Those are the three main factors that will be considered and the fact that she is quite aged.

“She occupies a public position so it is a serious offense because she should be setting an example and should not be lying under oath. That will be regarded as an aggravating circumstance.”

The 59-year-old Dlamini told the Johannesburg Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday that she has two dependents, and that she draws her salary from being ANC Women’s League president and a pension from Parliament.

Roux says Dlamini can appeal the decision to a higher court if she is not satisfied with the finding.

During mitigation of sentence State Prosecutor Matthews Rampyapedi said direct imprisonment for Dlamini would be in the interest of justice.

“The accused has been convicted of fraud before and now perjury the common element is dishonesty. We want accountability from public servants, the effects of this sentence should be felt as far away as Parliament, including at the Union Buildings and everyone entrusted with public trust.”

The case was postponed to 1 April for sentencing.


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