Plum job for sex-row former ambassador

Selby Makgotho

Selby Makgotho

The controversial former South African ambassador to Indonesia, Norman Mashabane, pictured right, has landed a R500000-a-year job as political adviser to Limpopo premier Sello Moloto.

Mashabane left the ambassadorial post under a cloud after allegations of sexual misconduct were levelled against him. The Foreign Affairs' internal disciplinary committee charged him with several counts of sexual misconduct.

He appealed to Foreign Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who cleared him.

Angered by the minister's decision, the public service association challenged her decision and took the matter to court.

The case will be heard later in the year.

Moloto came under fire yesterday from opposition parties for appointing Mashabane before the case was heard.

Mashabane's wife, Maite, is the MEC for local government and housing in Limpopo, and it has been alleged that this amounts to a conflict of interest.

Mike Holford, the DA provincial leader, said Mashabane was not morally intelligent.

"How can someone who violated the rights of women be trusted in that responsibility? His morals are not acceptable," said Holford.

Ike Kekana, leader of the United Independent Front, said Moloto's action was disappointing.

Moloto has a five-member advisory council of veterans, which advises him on political matters. Mashabane also advises Moloto on political matters. Media specialist Jack Mokobi is the premier's special advisor.

Moloto told Sowetan he did not see Mashabane's appointment as giving rise to a conflict of interest because Mashabane's role was to give advice, not instructions.

Moloto said: "Mashabane has been without a job for almost a year and people were quiet about it. We do not know of any case against the man because he has been cleared."