Speaker of the National Assembly, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nkakula, has appointed an independent panel to conduct a preliminary assessment of the African Transformation Movement’s (ATM) Section 89 moves against President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Section 89 of the Constitution provides that the National Assembly may remove the President of the Republic from office on the grounds of serious breach of the Constitution or law, serious misconduct or inability to perform official duties, while Rule 129A-Q governs the process of removing the President from office.

ATM filed the petition following allegations that Ramaphosa breached the Organized Crime Prevention Act by failing to report a robbery that took place at his Phala Phala farm in February 2020.

“The function of the independent panel is to make a preliminary assessment of the proposed petition and, in doing so, it must, under Rule 129G, make a recommendation to the Speaker within 30 days whether there is sufficient evidence to show that the President has committed any of the offenses specified in petition”, – explained in a statement the press secretary of the parliament Molata Motapa.

Former Chief Justice Sandile Ngcoba, former High Court judge Thokozile Masipa and UCT Public Law Associate Professor Richard Kaland will form the independent panel.

READ ALSO: Opposition parties unhappy with Parliament’s handling of Ramaphosa’s Phala Phala farm theft

The three names were chosen from 17 candidates recommended by political parties represented in the National Assembly.

“In terms of rules, the Speaker must appoint the panel after giving political parties represented in the Assembly a reasonable opportunity to nominate candidates and after giving due consideration to all nominees. The Speaker wishes to thank all the political parties that nominated candidates for the appointment,” Mapisa-Nkakula said in a statement on Wednesday.

READ MORE: Phala Phala farm theft: Ipid investigates cops allegedly involved in ‘cover-up’

The panel will begin its work on a date to be determined and announced after all administrative processes are completed, she said.

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