Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams has slated reports that she went to Switzerland with her husband to celebrate their wedding anniversary.
The Sunday Independent recently reported that Ndabeni-Abrahams enjoyed wedding anniversary celebrations with her husband in the US and Switzerland on taxpayers’ money.
The report added that Ndabeni-Abrahams’ husband enjoyed a chauffeur-driven ride in a Mercedes-Benz S600, allocated to the minister, from Geneva to Paris to go shopping.
“Ndabeni-Abrahams has also been accused of outsourcing departmental functions to her husband, by allowing him to interview candidates for positions,” the report stated.
Ministry spokesperson Nthabeleng Mokitimi-Dlamini confirmed that Ndabeni-Abrahams’ husband accompanied her on two international trips.
Minister hits back
Speaking to ENCA’s Xoli Mngambi, Ndabeni-Abrahams asked “What do you think, Xoli? Do you think I will take my husband to a wedding anniversary in Switzerland?”.
She added “I have never been to Switzerland. My husband has never been to Switzerland. We went to Geneva and New York,” she said.
Ndabeni-Abrahams added that she did the work of her department during the trips to Geneva and New York.
The Minister challenged the reporter who wrote the article about the wedding anniversary trip to provide evidence.
“I do realise that it is becoming the norm in this country. Journalists must make sure that when they give information, it is authentic,” she said.
Ndabeni-Abrahams later apologized for her statement, saying that she erroneously referred to Switzerland instead of France.
“I profusely apologize for this error as I meant to say that we have not been to France in that particular instance,” she said.